Is the Renovation Needed Now?

WhittHall
“Maybe the university should focus more on maintaining what is already here rather than advancing one area and leaving another lacking.” Photo from: http://i1.wp.com/www.andassoc.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/WhittHall.png?fit=476%2C305

Anyone who has been on Radford’s campus has seen the various renovations that have been happening across the campus. Whitt Hall has been under reconstruction for the entirety of this academic year, and the old apartments that used to be home to several humanities departments are long gone and are being replaced with a new parking lot. Just this year, the new College of Humanities and Behavioral Sciences building, or CHuBS, opened up after several years of construction. Several of the dorms in Moffett Quad were reopened after renovations last academic year. In fact, it seems like as soon as one construction project is finished, a new one begins. All of these new improvements are very nice and provide great facilities for both students and staff, but is all of it really necessary right now?

There’s no arguing that many of the new renovations and additions to Radford campus are needed; many of these buildings are very old and are in desperate need of an upgrade. But the real question is whether or not these renovations are the best option right now. After all, there have been instances of various departments around campus lacking in funding and supplies. So far, none of these instances have been a real issue, but maybe the university should focus more on maintaining what is already here rather than advancing one area and leaving another lacking. This is not to be ungrateful for the new facilities that we have (they are very nice and very helpful) but more so for the idea of spreading the help around and making sure every department gets what they need first before we spend more money. Not to mention that sometimes all of the construction going on can cause a bit of trouble for students as it often closes off pathways people typically use.

Goku vs. Superman

Many people in the comic book community strongly believe that Superman is the strongest character to exist. However, those in the manga/anime community believe that the character Goku from Dragonball Z is the strongest character to exist. These two communities have been arguing since the 90’s about who would win in a fight: Superman or Goku. Now, it seems almost impossible to compare two characters from two totally different realms, but some people have gone into real depth when talking about who would win.

goku vs superman
“Based on Goku’s power level and ability to fight, Goku would win against Superman.” Photo from: http://img13.deviantart.net/b2ad/i/2012/099/e/5/superman_and_goku_by_dmgoodr-d4vkc5y.jpg

Superman and Goku have some similarities that should be considered in this fight. Both characters are not from Earth, and both of their species have been proven to be much stronger than humans. Each has special abilities, such as flight and super-strength. Both characters are the protagonists in their series. Both have enemies that have pushed them to their limits.

Now, what differences do they have? Goku has the sense of Ki, which enables him to pull off the Kaioken, Super Kamehameha Wave, speed, and flight. He is a Saiyan, which means that he can surpass his “base form” and become a Super Saiyan, or even surpass that with Super Saiyan 2, Super Saiyan 3, Super Saiyan God, and Super Saiyan Blue God. Superman does not have the transformations that Goku has, but he does have x-ray vision, heat vision, cold breath, and is basically “invincible”.

In power levels, a human’s power level is 5 (based on Dragonball Z readings). Superman’s power level is 5 x 3125 because he can lift 3125 times what a human can, thus making his power level 15,625 (1). Goku’s power level at Kaioken x4 was about 40,000, thus making it seem like Goku would win out of pure strength. Goku also has been trained in martial arts, which means he has been trained to fight, unlike Superman (2).

So, in conclusion, based on Goku’s power level and ability to fight, Goku would win against Superman.

1 – http://www.wjunction.com/202-general-discussion-archive/107398-goku-vs-superman-scientifically-chosen-answer.html 2- https://9gag.com/gag/ao0n6ze/goku-vs-superman-the-truth-that-hurts-dc-fanboys

6 Crucial Things Every Aspiring Writer Should Do in College

English majors, whether you are one or know one, are among some of the most belittled and questioned students (right next to art and theater majors), facing a massive amount of competition. English majors may think they are at a disadvantage, but there are a lot of steps that they can take in college to build themselves as a writer. With all the online exposure to articles today, there is a need for English majors to practice their creativity and style. They should take full advantage of opportunities to improve their skills if they want to overcome the hardships of being a writer. Below are opportunities, inside and outside of college, that all English majors should strive to partake in.

Join an online platform for writers

It will not only help you express your creativity with writing, but it will help you practice it overall. Writing essays for classes certainly helps, but not always being able to pick a topic and having to write with an often harsh set of rules doesn’t allow for much freedom. Writing something because you have to is what we’ve all been doing throughout school, but the difference in your thoughts, style, and imagination when you write something you want to is amazing. Every English major has been used to writing because they have to, and although they enjoy it, it’s nothing compared to freely writing on your own schedule. Even if you don’t intend to have it published, and it’s just for fun, every English major needs to try to do this when they can. Additionally, writing for multiple websites can help you adapt to taking on different kinds of writing and developing a better feel for how to write for an audience.

Study literature

Many writers don’t pay attention to or consider how important the history of English was. It will help you appreciate English’s meaning and potential once you look at how it has changed over time. Many feminist writers, for example, had to work ten times harder than female writers today to get known, and some even had to pretend they were men to get their work really well recognized. Learning about the differences of making it as a writer back then and today will make you appreciate the new opportunities us writers have today and you will know to take advantage of them more. Shakespeare might seem redundant to most people, since none of us today will ever be writing in that form, let alone writing plays. However, Shakespeare goes to show that writing can be impactful for hundreds of years. Many of his works are relatable today, despite the fact that the writing is extremely outdated.

Don’t sell yourself short

Every English major will hear “What are you going to do with your degree?” or “Don’t you know how hard it is to make it as an English major?” at least a few dozen times throughout college. You may feel, at times, discouraged, but research all the different careers English majors go into, and you will feel a lot more hopeful. Many English majors go to law school, and many get jobs completely outside of the typical English specific workplaces. You might be thinking in terms of simply writing for magazines or online publications. Many English majors have been conditioned to think they will be working solely among other writers, whether by society or their classes, without thinking how useful an English degree can be in many other branches of work. Many writers work alongside engineers, scientists, and software developers, so don’t think you’re not capable of doing beyond what you thought you’d do.

writing
“Writing for multiple websites can help you adapt to taking on different kinds of writing and developing a better feel for how to write for an audience.” Photo from: https://0.s3.envato.com/files/134116777/Writing%20Lines%20Preview.jpg

Be as opened minded as you can

When they are first starting out, a lot of writers unintentionally write for themselves, when they should be writing for their audience. What this means is that you’re focusing too much on what you want in your article, rather than considering what a reader would want. Our perspective on our own writing is completely different from a reader’s point of view. While you might like using fancy words to make your text look more sophisticated, your readers might get distracted or annoyed by the unnecessary amount of SAT words. Practice figuring out who your audience is going to be, and look at it from their perspective as you write what could either change lives or merely look good in your eyes.

Read everything you can get your hands on

Reading is obviously important for virtually anyone who wants to broaden their knowledge. For English majors, it’s also important for that, but even more important in helping them develop as writers. It’s incredibly important to expand your vocabulary, no matter what kind of writing you want to do. It’s optimal to read the writing that you aspire to do one day, but it is also beneficial to read all kinds of other styles. The New York Times, The New Yorker, and The Washington Post are all great examples of legible sources that display unique and concise styles of writing. It’s also important to look at what the popular news sources focus on, how they deal with controversy, and how they (sometimes) organize such complex thoughts. Similar to writing outside of school, reading outside of school is important in the way that your view on it is different. As writers, we need to consider all types of writing, what we want to be as a writer, and how we can be unique among other writers.

Learn to accept criticism

If you want to be a successful writer, you need to learn not to care what others think of you. Being an English major is similar to an art major, in that you’re expressing yourself to the world, often times to many people you don’t know. You need to expect that there will always be people who disagree with your work or who don’t understand its purpose, all while learning more and more about communicating your thoughts in the most effective way. Knowing your potential, but also being aware of the possibility of criticism is essential when writing. Overcoming this will help you see past this. What you should focus on as a writer is simply the audience that acknowledges and appreciates your work because those are the ones who will help you advance, not slow you down.

With the amount of competition and creativity that comes with being an English major, it’s important to get as much practice outside of school as you do inside school. Being well rounded in different kinds of writing and on a range of topics is essential to becoming a writer. Classes definitely challenge us as writers, but outside of class, we have the opportunity to expand in ways we can’t with school. Following the above steps will get you well on your way to becoming a more confident writer who recognizes the potentials and challenges that every writer will face. Doing all of the above does not guarantee a higher-level job, but it will definitely advance you further into the writing industry.

To My Aunt

One of the greatest gifts you ever gave me:
A rain-soaked afternoon
Digging through a shoebox of broken crayons
Spinning the stories in my head to their first willing ear.
(But not their last. I swear to you.)
Gentle eyes and complete conviction
as you tell me,
“I bet you’ll be a writer one day.”

rain
“My life’s greatest mystery: How to thank someone for being catalyst to some of the best parts of you.” Photo from: http://answerangels.com.au/images/doyoulikebeinginsideandwatchingtherainoutside2.jpg

A dozen more stories like that
Branded on the parts of my mind
That drag me to my early morning classes
When my comfortable bed warns against it.
There is no thank you card for that.
Prepackaged, Hallmark-branded sentimentality could never hold a candle to it.

My life’s greatest mystery:
How to thank someone
For being a catalyst to some of the best parts of you.
But I think I’ve finally figured out the answer.

Maybe I’ll tell you about it one day,
On the acknowledgments page.

College As Told By Khloe Kardashian

There is no one in the world that can express how college students feel about college, but Khloe Kardashian is by far, the person that most closely feels the way you feel about life. So here is KoKo on college.

  1. You don’t take bullshit from anyone.

Khloe is the type to take what you throw at her and dish it right back at you. College can bring out some emotions in students and teachers, and she wouldn’t be afraid to throw shade back.

  1. You have your lazy days, lazy months or lazy semesters.

There is just something about college that makes you not want to finish it. Well, Khloe has the perfect solution for you. Just don’t deal.

  1. Prerequisites.

The most annoying thing about college is prerequisites. These unnecessary classes don’t have anything to do with your major and are just a waste of time. They are just a way for colleges to get more money from you.

  1. You aren’t afraid to protect your friends.

The friends that you make in college are the ones you keep forever because you go through everything together. If there is someone messing with your friend, then there is a slight chance you’ll have to make a quick trip to CVS for a tub of Vaseline.

  1. You get a little too comfortable with your college friends.

There are many things you experience in college and those things are rarely ever spoken of again. You see your friends at their worst and they see you at yours.

  1. The “freshman 15″ means nothing to you.

    Khloe
    “College isn’t something that comes around every year. It’s a once in a lifetime experience that everyone needs.” Photo from: https://images.contentful.com/g8qtv9gzg47d/image_post_63973/fc1408744cfcfc01054e49b4a34203cf/Slider_1_-_Khlo__Kardashian

Even if you do care about the “freshman 15,” there is no name for the upperclassman weight gain, so therefore, it does not exist. Besides, the only healthy thing on campus is expensive.

  1. When your professor assigns homework over break.

The fact that one even attempts to assign anything over break is hilarious to me. If the work is done, I guarantee that it is done last minute and students don’t put any effort into it. Personally, I think that professors do this just to stress us out. In all honestly, it’s not us that have to read all of those papers. You’re welcome.

  1. Your judgment is real at parties.

When college students party, they might be drunk, but their creepy meter is on overdrive.

  1. When your parents ask you where you were last night.

When you are home for the holidays, you find that your parents are always wondering where you are. You have been so used to going where you want when you want. You see yourself as an adult, but when you want money to go to Chipotle Mexican Grill, you are suddenly a child again.

  1. When your roommate touches your stuff.

There are always boundaries that don’t need to be crossed when it comes to roommates. The number one rule to follow when you have a roommate is, “You don’t touch my stuff. I don’t touch your stuff.”

  1. Experience it before it passes you by.

College isn’t something that comes around every year. It’s a once in a lifetime experience that everyone needs. You have your whole life to be an adult, so maybe living it before you become one isn’t a bad idea.

Anonymous Online

There are countless websites and apps that will let people say whatever they want without revealing themselves. They do this through the use of usernames (which can be almost anything) or by allowing the option for people to remain anonymous. It is a popular feature that many companies and/or websites use to encourage conversation and use of their product. After all, there are no real consequences of typing out a message; people are more open to talking and saying things they wouldn’t normally say if they know they can walk away without anyone ever realizing it’s them. But, that is part of the problem, isn’t it?

Conceptually, being anonymous online is a good idea; it makes for a much more relaxed and stress free environment. People can discuss things that might be unpopular, and having that feeling of freedom can make things easier. But when this idea is put into practice, and real life people get involved, it gets much messier and the worst in people tends to come out. Without the fear of punishment, what’s to stop a person from saying terrible things to anyone and everyone?

cyberbullying
“Without the fear of punishment, what’s to stop a person from saying terrible things to anyone and everyone?” Photo from: http://highstermobile.co/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/cyberbullying.jpg

Let’s face it, the reality of the situation is that online, people can say things that are racist, sexist, homophobic, Islamophobic, and xenophobic, which are just a few examples in a long list. It’s because people with those kinds of views have a mask and a wall to hide behind. They can go about their lives without anyone knowing that they have been spouting hate. If someone started shouting racist slurs in public, then there is a legitimate fear of retaliation, be it physical or legal. Many of these kinds of people are aware that what they are saying is offensive and derogatory. They say it with the intent to hurt and infuriate but they also know that doing so could get them into trouble. Which is why becoming an anonymous figure online is their tool of choice.

Anonymous online posting can be a good thing, but it is a dangerous two edged sword. It often seems to be hurting just as much as it is helping. At the end of the day, it poses an interesting question: how much online freedom is too much? On one hand, it’s rarely a good idea to give up freedom for the sake of security/policing, as that leads to tyranny. But give people too much freedom, and that leads to anarchy. Not to mention, you have to make sure all of these rules are enforced equally. It wouldn’t be right or fair to consistently accuse one group of doing the wrong thing while ignoring another group that is actually committing the action.

How To Stay Motivated

There are only a few weeks left of the semester and, if you are anything like me, you are worn out and exhausted from everything going on right now. It is tempting to just lay in bed all day, watch Netflix (before they take all your favorites off), and eat chicken nuggets from Chik-Fil-A. However, you must keep focused and push through to the end of the semester! Here are a few ways to do so.

student with books
“Make sure you take time to yourself to breathe and relax in order to stay sane.” Photo from: http://footage.framepool.com/shotimg/562054221-worry-ambition-pile-library.jpg

Remember why you are getting an education. Maybe you have a dream job that you are working towards. Maybe you want to meet new people. Maybe you want to be able to support a family one day. No matter who you are, we are all here because of a specific reason. We have to push through to reach those goals!

Remember that there are only a few weeks left and you are going home! In a few weeks, you will be able to lie on the beach with the sun beaming down on you. I don’t know about you, but keeping this thought in mind is helping me get through the end of the school year!

Take time to yourself. End of semester= busyness. Make sure you take time to yourself to breathe and relax in order to stay sane. Read a book, sleep, write in a journal. Do whatever you need to just relax.

Stay ahead of your assignments and studying. Since it is the end of the year, professors want to make sure they get in all the work they can before finals. Start your assignments and studying early so you aren’t feeling crammed and rushed when the due dates start rolling in. This will make for a low-stress end of the semester.

Cat-Calling: Don’t be Sexist

One of the issues and daily harassments that women have to deal with is cat-calling. This is when men yell what are usually superficial, sexist and derogatory remarks at random women passing by. Some of the worst ones involve blatant and disgusting sexual acts or innuendos, while others objectify women and focus on one specific aspect of their body. You would think it would be common knowledge not to harass someone, especially a random stranger. Yet, it happens far too often.

cat calling
“Yelling at a woman to tell her she has a nice backside is, again, objectifying her and making her an object for your pleasure.” Photo from: http://az616578.vo.msecnd.net/files/2015/07/05/635717311775156065-116091019_attractive-woman-men-staring.imgopt1000x70.jpg

The thought process behind cat-calling is the cat-caller tends to have a skewed perspective on what a compliment is. Telling a woman that you’d like to have intercourse with her (usually said in more crude terms) is not a compliment. It’s objectifying her and reducing her from a real person to a thing for sex. Yelling at a woman to tell her she has a nice backside is, again, objectifying her and making her an object for your pleasure. Contrary to popular belief (or so it would seem), women are real people, actual human beings, and they are not there for the purpose of pleasing men. Hearing that they would be a good sexual partner does not make them feel good. It makes them feel uncomfortable and possibly worry they may be sexually assaulted.

Women like to be complimented; in fact, everyone does  it’s a normal part of being human. We like to hear nice things about ourselves. But being reduced to a single, sexualized body part or sexual act is not a compliment. It’s demeaning and dehumanizing. Women are more than just their bodies and they are not there to make men want them. A good general rule of thumb is that if you would say it to your mother, then it’s probably okay to say to another woman. If you wouldn’t say it to your mother then you probably shouldn’t say it to a random woman walking down the street.

Radford’s Application Boom

Radford University has experienced a significant increase in the number of applications submitted for admittance to the institution. As of February, a record breaking total of 13,291 applications were received, towering over the previous record of 8,192 from the incoming class in Fall of 2012. With such a large increase, there have been growing questions regarding how many students will choose to enroll at Radford, especially since the college has started enforcing its two-year on-campus housing rule in the past year.

radford students
“As of February, a record breaking total of 13,291 applications were received, towering over the previous record of 8,192 from the incoming class in Fall of 2012.” Photo from: http://68.media.tumblr.com/deece1607c8544f9577cd013d9eff6dc/tumblr_inline_nwornm2haF1sq03e6_500.jpg

It is exciting to see student interest in Radford growing so quickly, especially since overall enrollment has been down the past several years. While the Fall 2016 census indicated that current enrollment is 9,401, the incoming class of 2021 has the potential to push Radford to levels seen in Fall of 2013, when there were just over 9,900 students enrolled. There is even the possibility of the enrollment reaching beyond those numbers.

One of the biggest questions facing the university is on-campus housing. Radford has already started taking steps to ensure all students have appropriate student housing accommodations that fit within the two-year on-campus policy. While it may not be feasible to quickly build another residence hall, there certainly is the possibility of renting out apartment units around campus that feature residence life staff and programming.

Seeing such a large increase in applications is a tremendous step for Radford University. As the college age population in Virginia has declined in recent years, being able to attract such a large amount of applicants is a true testament to the success of Radford’s new branding strategies and marketing techniques, as well as the influx of new ideas from Radford’s President and Vice President for Enrollment Management. Coupled with a talented admissions staff, Radford has prepared itself very well to be a top choice for higher education in the Commonwealth of Virginia and around the country.

*Application and enrollment numbers are a courtesy of Radford University’s application record announcement and the institution’s electronic fact book.

 

 

Little White Snowflake

snowflakes
“Little white snowflakes falling on the pale white skin.” Photo from: https://writinginnorthnorfolk.files.wordpress.com/2015/12/snowflake-tears.jpg

Little white snowflake falling from the sky,
Little white sparkles falling on the curls.
White flakes hanging from the lashes,
Light blue eyes watching the gray clouds go by.
Watching the little white snowflakes falling all around,
One, Two, Three, time to fall down.
All the little white snowflakes acting as a bed,
Nice, soft, and very cold.
Little white snowflakes falling on the pale white skin.

A Right to Online Privacy

With the recent House bill that would allow Internet Service Providers (ISP) to sell anyone’s private browsing history, it is a good time to discuss people’s right to online privacy, as well as the serious breach of net neutrality. Originally, ISP had to obtain your permission to sell your online history to anyone, but soon they will be able to sell it to whoever they want to, whenever they want to. Which, frankly, is a massive invasion of privacy.

cyber criminals
“ISP will be able to track your every move online as soon as you make it. They can, essentially, stalk you online.” Photo from: https://www.fbi.gov/image-repository/cyber-crime.jpg/@@images/image/high

What you do online is private information, unless you choose to make it public. But until you make that choice, it is a private matter. However that boundary is about to be crossed and soon it’ll be open season for every internet user. The least of it is that individual targeted ad campaigns will become the norm. Companies will analyze the data and try their best to get you to buy their product, likely at a higher rate. While that is annoying, it is not the most serious issue. ISP will be able to track your every move online as soon as you make it. They can, essentially, stalk you online. With this kind of information and power at their fingertips, the internet will no longer be a neutral entity and instead become just another method of exploitation.

There is also the fact that ISP will be taking advantage of you and making money off you, and you won’t see a dime of it. Think about it – the product they will be selling is your internet browsing history, something they wouldn’t have if you did not go online. You make the product, and they sell it off to the highest bidder. All you get are more ads to inconvenience you. Even if we ignore the invasion of privacy that is occurring here, this still isn’t a fair deal. This bill allows ISP to sell your private information and make money off something you create. All the while, you get harassed by a large amount of ads, and they profit off of you.

Real or Virtual Classrooms?

The world is constantly evolving and growing as the level of technology increases and new technology becomes readily available. It seems like every day there is a new technological development that helps us in our daily lives. One of these developments is the rise of online classrooms.

It is becoming more popular to make college or high school courses available online, removing the need for students to be present inside of a classroom. The main reasons for these (relatively) new online classes are their accessibility and convenience. Some students are stay at home parents, some cannot afford both the tuition and campus housing, and some have jobs that prevent them from having a normal class schedule. There are many reasons for people to make use of online courses; they are helpful and they allow many people who could not otherwise manage to get a college degree to do so. But people can also miss out on the experience and knowledge that comes with having an actual class that isn’t just an assignment on a screen.

computer
“There are many reasons for people to make use of online courses; they are helpful and they allow many people who could not otherwise manage to get a college degree to do so.” Photo from: http://oregonstate.edu/cla/sites/default/files/images/students-looking-at-computer.jpg

In traditional classrooms, there is a greater opportunity for discussion among the students. People can ask questions and ask for further explanation if they do not understand the material. With most online classes, you get an assigned reading, a worksheet and/or assignment, and maybe a video explaining what you need to do. The issue is that this method does not provide many, if any, actual teaching moments. If learning was as simple as opening up a textbook and reading it, then we wouldn’t need teachers, or even actual classes. Learning isn’t as simple as reading the material and then taking a test on it.

None of this is to say that online classes are bad or that we should do away with them, but they certainly shouldn’t become the primary method of teaching. We should stick primarily with traditional classrooms and supplement education with online classes. Keep online classrooms, improve them, encourage them, but don’t let them become the main method of teaching.

Society’s Robot – Chapter 5

“No, follow my lead, Cassandra.”

I nodded my head and looked down at my feet. Zach was teaching me how to dance since I had forgotten how to in the last nine years. In the last hour I had stepped on his foot eight times, tripped over my own feet ten times, and caused Zach to trip three times. I knew I used to always be a klutz, especially while growing up, but I never thought it would come back to haunt me. I was counting in my head as Zach and I danced around the room, making sure not to trip or step on him. Phillip and Rogue had decided watching us was more fun than spending time outside on their day off.

“Good, Cassie.”

I looked at him, finally getting the simplest of all dance steps down.

“Okay, I’m going to spin you out, then pull you back in, okay?”

I nodded my head just as he spun me out then pulled me back in so my back was to his chest. His arms were lying over mine, and our hands were at my waist. I could hear him hum as he swayed us from side to side, turning in circles. He twirled me till I was facing him again, setting us in the beginning position.

Zach looked into my eyes while he slowly leaned in. I closed my eyes and waited for whatever he would do. I felt him move away, causing me to open my eyes to see him looking conflicted.

“Um, that’s good for today Cassie. Why don’t you go enjoy the rest of your day off?”

I nodded my head and walked out, leaving him there confused by what had just happened.
~
I sat outside on the garden swing that sat among dozens of flowers. The place made me feel like I was in another world. I kept thinking about how Zach seemed to have almost kissed me. I had been kissed before but it was because another servant was going to be requested for a night’s activity and needed help learning to kiss. I messed with my heart locket while thinking of why in the world he would want to kiss me.

I sighed and simply swung while watching the clouds. I closed my eyes as a breeze picked up, blowing my hair away from my face. I heard the click of a camera going off and looked over to see Zach holding a camera.

“Sorry, you just reminded me of…” He shook his head, throwing the thought away. “Never mind.”

I nodded my head and looked back down at my feet. I had decided to change into shorts and a loose tank top after practicing with Zach for Wednesday’s event.

I noticed Zach had also changed into something more comfortable to be outside in. “So, how did you learn so much about photography, Miss Richards?” Zach asked as he sat down next to me, looking over the photos he had taken.

“Um, at my last house, I didn’t finish school even though I was so bright, so as a gift they sent me to finish off my senior year of high school. Then they paid for me to do some classes at the community college a few miles from the house they lived in.”

He nodded his head and set his camera down on the ground carefully. “I went all the way to Virginia for my classes. My father sent me away saying it was for my own good.”

I could see the emotion flash across his face; he hadn’t wanted to leave New York to take classes that he could easily take here. From the stories John and Philip had told me, I’d learned that Mr. Addison wasn’t a kind man, even to his wife and children. Philip had told me the Addisons had five children including Zach. I took Zach’s hand to show him he should keep going on.

He looked at my hand then back at me. “He really sent me away because I was attached to my youngest sister and he was worried I would care more about her than taking over the family business. See, she was sick. She had a heart defect, and the doctors couldn’t even figure out what was wrong. For the first three years of her life, I was the one that sat with her at night to make sure everything was alright. I was the big brother.” He sighed and shook his head. “My father sent me away and the first month I was gone and no one was watching her closely enough. Her heart failed.”

I looked down, almost worried about showing the pain and sadness I felt for him. I couldn’t do that, so all I said was, “I’m sorry.”

I looked up and noticed he just shrugged. “It was five years ago and you have no reason to say sorry. You didn’t even know her.”

mansion
“I sat outside on the garden swing that sat among dozens of flowers. The place made me feel like I was in another world.”

I decided it was time I left and headed back in for the day. I got up and turned to him. “I think I’ll go back…” I could see the pain in his eyes, like no one had listened to how losing his baby sister had made him feel, as if he was forced to not feel, just like me. So I sat back down.

“Why don’t you tell me what she was like?” I smiled lightly, hoping it showed I really did want to know. In return, he smiled back and started telling me about how energetic she was, even with her condition.
*
I was curled up in Zach’s lap, by his request, while he read me Greek Myths, something I usually read to myself. But after talking with Zach about his little sister – who I found out was named Lizzie – I realized how much he missed reading to someone. It was our time in his study anyway, so I didn’t mind. In a way, it actually felt good to have him read to me.

“… So as the seasons changed, the Greeks knew Persephone was home safe away from Hades and his evil of the underworld, and so spring was given and the harvest could continue once again…”

I curled up to Zach more. Of all the myths, the ‘Rape of Persephone,’ as it was called, made me feel even more lost because I didn’t have a mother to help me out of trouble. Mine had left me on the front steps of an orphanage to fight for my life. I felt his free arm wrap around me more and hold me against his chest. I looked up at him and met his green eyes. The fire next to us lit his dark eyes only slightly but it was enough to make them seem almost as magical as the garden outside.

“Cassie…” He slowly leaned in more. I watched him before feeling his lips cover mine. I closed my eyes and slowly leaned into him more, pressing my lips against his.

I could hear the book fall as he tangled his fingers into my hair, holding me close against him. The feeling that came over me was one I’d never felt before, and it felt incredible. Till I realized something and pulled away. I looked at him as my heart began to speed up and his hands laid lightly over my cheeks. I quickly got up and went up to my room, ignoring the feeling in the pit of my stomach that what I just did was wrong. And I don’t mean the kiss, but running away from him after.

R-SPACE’s Casino Night

On Friday, March 24th, R-Space’s Late Night director Richard Delehanty worked with an organization to provide the student body with a night of casino games. By showing your I.D. at the door, you received $1,000 playing money and one raffle ticket per hour. An estimated 140 students participated and had nothing but positive feedback to give about the event.

Casino
“By showing your I.D. at the door, you received $1,000 playing money and one raffle ticket per hour.”

Many students had no experience with Casino games, but employees working the tables were happy to give instructions. The games included Blackjack, Hold ‘Em Poker, Deluxe Roulette, Craps, Casino War, and a Money Wheel.

R-space provided free food and even a photo booth with props. Every hour, students were given one raffle ticket to win designated prizes located on the Bonnie stage. Prizes included a Home stereo system, Bluetooth speaker and charging dock, Blue-Ray/DVD player, several portable phone chargers, a skateboard, and a bike. The event was a success to all students who attended.

 

Rohypnol – Part 2

July 21st 12:40 am – I took Rocky for a walk late tonight to clear my head. He was whining at the door, so I had to take him out before it made me angry. Yesterday, all I could write about was how lonely and misanthropic I felt. What a dichotomy, huh? Hating people but feeling lonely…It’s a catch-22 if I’ve ever seen one. My luck may be turning around. I saw a girl tonight out with her friends. I couldn’t help but notice her. The way her dress sparkled, hips swaying with confidence as she walked…her poise and grace outshone every member of her group. She saw Rocky and asked to pet him. Of course I said yes. How could I deny a woman like her? I asked for her number, but I think she was playing hard to get. I followed her home, keeping my distance to make sure she got there safely. She only lives 10 minutes away from me. Maybe I’ll go check on her tomorrow night, and make sure she hasn’t changed her mind about us.

July 21st 3:00 p.m. — My psychologist told me this bullshit would help. What kind of grown man keeps a record of his every move? Whatever. Maybe if she reads what I write she can kill this monster inside my brain. I can’t stop thinking about that girl yesterday. She was so perfect. Small but not sickly, long straight blonde hair – my perfect type. I just can’t stop thinking about her. I think I’ll go visit her tonight.

July 22nd 1:00 a.m. – I tried to go to her house and knock on her door, but no one was home. I guess I’ll try tomorrow. Maybe I’ll see her around town since she is so close. I guess then it’ll be fate. I just can’t stop thinking about her. I think we’re in love.

Rohypnol tablets. Strong sedative & widely known as a 'date rape' drug.
“She started running, like she was afraid of something. I didn’t want her to get hurt so I just grabbed her and put her in my car. The rest is a blur.”

July 23rd Midnight – I saw her again tonight while I was at my favorite bar. What is she doing out on a Sunday night drinking? I’m sitting in my car outside Admiral’s Arms on Spencer Street, the usual. I’ve never seen her here before. She must have come here to see me…. I’ll follow her home to make sure she gets there safe. You never know what could happen at night in a place like this.

July 23rd 10:00 a.m. – I don’t remember a lot from last night. I remember following the pretty woman home from the bar. I was only trying to make sure she got home safe since her friends ditched her. She started running, like she was afraid of something. I didn’t want her to get hurt so I just grabbed her and put her in my car. The rest is a blur. Fuck, why can’t I remember? What if she gave me her number? What if she agreed to go on a date with me? I keep fucking up. I have a psychologist appointment at 4 today; maybe she can help me make sense of this.

July 23rd 12 p.m. – She’s downstairs. I don’t know what happened tonight, but I CAN’T go back to the hospital again. They’ll take my dog away from me.
Pros: I have my dream girl. I have my dog. I have a sound proof basement. I have friends willing to help me when I need them. I am starting to have more feelings than a few months ago.
Cons: The girl I am in love with is in my basement. I have a lot of blood to clean up.
My psychologist told me, whenever I feel myself panicking, take my medication and make a list of pros and cons. If the pros outweigh the cons, I have nothing to worry about. I’ll wash up before my appointment and explain everything. Hopefully they’ll understand.

Students’ Say On: Smoke-Free Campus

We’ve all walked through a cloud of smoke on our way to class at one time or another. As most students already know, Radford University is not a smoke-free campus. Students are allowed to smoke outside on campus as long as they are 25 feet away from buildings. However, some students still smoke relatively close to buildings.

cigarettes
“The majority of students we talked to expressed annoyance at being forced to walk through others’ smoke clouds.” Photo from: http://media.lehighvalleylive.com/bethlehem_impact/photo/pack-of-cigarettes-b0e864c515496a00.jpg

This week, we asked students whether they knew what a smoke-free campus was (a campus where the use of all tobacco products is prohibited) and whether they thought Radford should be a smoke-free campus. The majority of students we talked to expressed annoyance at being forced to walk through others’ smoke clouds while on campus. However, they also viewed the issue as something that doesn’t have much of an effect on them otherwise and said they were fine with Radford not banning smoking on campus completely. But other students believed that Radford should be a smoke-free campus or there should be designated areas where smoking is allowed. When asked how the university would enforce this smoke-free policy, some students were unsure. But others had ideas: some said the rules or restrictions could be implemented at Quest so students would know from the start what the policies were. Some said the university should treat cigarettes the same way as alcohol—that is, taking tobacco products from students if they are seen using them or charging them a fine.

If Radford does ever become a smoke-free campus, it will be interesting to see how they try and keep it that way. Perhaps they would use some of the tactics that the students we talked to thought of; it would be interesting to see if the ideas work. But one student had a point: “People are going to do what they want to do no matter what, so it doesn’t really matter [what the policies are].”

Humans of Radford University

Student pictured: Alan Ward

“I had been preparing for some kind of executive role since I was a freshman, but I didn’t really know if I would have the capability, support, or connections needed to be successful. Plus, I had been pushing against headwinds that started when I was a sophomore here at Radford, something that may have set me back.

When it got around to spring semester of junior year and I finally had to make a decision, I had pretty much made up my mind that I was going to run for, and hopefully win, the presidency. But as I waited and observed the things going on around me, I could tell that there may be a different calling. While we had strong presidential leadership over the past two years and multiple people who could do the job for the next year, the post of head of student finances had been in shambles for years. There was no clear direction, no change, and certainly no transparency to the student body as to how their money was being handled.

I had always been told, ‘he who holds the gold, holds the power,’ and that power needs to be in the hands of a responsible leader who is willing to set a new vision and create change. It also didn’t hurt that my education background was in economics, so I knew that I could bring the knowledge I gained from inside the classroom to the table.

Even though many of my colleagues wanted me to choose otherwise, I did what was right – not only what was right for me, but what was right for the university.

Being student body Chief Financial Officer is no easy job. You are rarely thanked for your hard work and commonly questioned because of the tremendous responsibility you hold, but I hope I’ve served this campus well in my tenure and have laid the foundation for prosperity in the years ahead.”