Archive for December, 2010

Open Letter From CR Nursing Student — Thanks

Sunday, December 19th, 2010

The students of the LVN program who had their lovely pinning last night wanted to be sure to thank the entire CR Community for the support you have given them in reaching this goal. While they realize there are too many to mention who have helped them along the way, they wanted to thank Dr. Pat Girczyc for her support and guidance, Erica Silver for her exceptional help in getting them on their way as a counsleor and then her encouragement to not only the DSPS students but to all of them, and Kelly Wilson for her help in “keeping details straight.” Thank you’s go to Dean Anita Janis and Bob Horel for “amazing Math support!” The students send out a “special thanks” to Stephen McCullom and Dan Hernandez. It was stated over and over that these two men “support us [the students] every day, going above and beyond, and we wouldn’t have made it without them.”

I am truly blessed to work with not only the most awesome students in the world, but also the greatest group of staff and faculty ever! What you do every day makes a big difference to our students. Thank you!

Be safe and take gentle care during this Holiday season,

Melody Pope

Christmas in El Limon

Friday, December 17th, 2010

Livin’ it up on College Redwoods News

Thursday, December 16th, 2010

CR Students Make Demands to Board of Trustees

Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

The Cost of Free Speech

Wednesday, December 8th, 2010

The media can play a very important part in social action. To use a more specific example of how this is, we can take a look at the College of the Redwoods main Eureka Campus and the rumor that has been swiftly sweeping it. The rumor is about classes being canceled this summer. Many of the students are distressed by such a rumor, and they are reworking their schedules to meet the deadline for their academic plans. I will be using the media as a medium to get my personal student observations out, and hoping that my fellow students do not take this issue lightly.

The College of the Redwoods main Eureka Campus has already suffered from many classes being cut for the current fall semester, and it personally put a damper on what I planned on studying here at CR. Now, I’m eventually going to have to branch out beyond the Eureka Campus in order to fulfill my academic goals before entering the workforce.

In addition, I myself have never attended, and don’t plan on attending the classes this summer. Yet, I am still directly affected by the possibility of summer classes being cut. Since students are worried that their summer classes will be cut, they are hastily registering in more classes for the upcoming spring semester. Despite my bad track record, I was actually very quick with my registration this semester, and yet because of the rumor of cutting summer classes, I still couldn’t get the best choices of class times and preferred classes.

We students have voices, but it seems a lot of us are afraid to use them for the political issues at CR. I myself have been known not to verbalize my thoughts, or even process my feelings on a subject such as this one.

Then again, perhaps it’s that many students just don’t care about what happens at CR. However, I have a hard time believing that if a student attending has been affected by the financial cuts of classes at CR, as I have, that they would just sit and let the fate of their academic career hang in the balance without any acknowledgement of the matter.  

Horror Film Discussion– Not Easy

Wednesday, December 8th, 2010

This is a student review of a discussion in class we had about popular horror movies.

Recently in Journalism 5 the first of a two-part presentation was given on the history of horror movies. This article is intended to give feedback regarding the presentation’s content and the effectiveness of its delivery. The point of the presentation seemed to be to teach the audience several things about: the evolution of horror films in relation to the media and their impact on our culture.

What was presented, however, was not well organized or thorough. Instead, it contained six seemingly random YouTube clips from the presenters’ favorite horror films. Each clip was approximately 2-3 minutes long, and contained either the creepiest or most gruesome parts the presenters could find. While the clips successfully made much of the audience uneasy, even provoking a few people to leave the classroom, it failed to establish any relevant point other than what most people already know; these movies are disturbing.

If you are not a fan of horror films to begin with, like me, and find yourself subjected to these kinds of presentations, you have to wonder what was the point of the presentation? If its objective was teach something, it failed, because I can say that I walked out of class with the same knowledge about scary movies that I had before. This was a disappointment because as a culture, we already know that these films are gruesome and creepy so what was the value of spending almost the whole class watching long clips of people being torn apart or anticipating suspenseful moments.

In the beginning, I was expecting a cohesive PowerPoint presentation, that had some clips of a few scenes containing evidence of not only the evolution of horror films, but the other previously mentioned key points of media involvement and cultural impact.  Instead, I found it a waste of time, even walking out class early for the first time as the last few clips from some “slasher” film were about to be played.

It is obvious there are a fair number of people who enjoy horror films and even consider these movies to be an amusing source of entertainment. But there are many people who do not.  Additionally, I felt that three minutes was far too much time to spend on each clip, especially when there was no attention paid to any educational points.

A very important thing about giving a presentation is that you need to know your audience. One also needs to be able to speak clearly while presenting their main points, and not let images take control of the presentation.  It’s surprising how distracting clips can be. Speaking from past experience as a former student in a public speech class, I can say this presentation did not deliver any of the points it initially set out prove. I found no educational value in this presentation and would suggest for any future presentations that there should be more organization and content in order to educate/inform the audience.

Black Friday — Seeing Green

Wednesday, December 8th, 2010

Black Friday is supposed to be this crazy shopper holiday. Well it is definitely nothing to be taken lightly. Sarah Visser, Whitney Flenner and I had our video camera at hand ready to film the madness!!! It was wayyyyy more that what I had expected. To start off, we went to Target. It was supposed to open at 4am, so we thought a safe bet would be there at about 3:30ish…but to our suprise that just found us standing at the end of the line, wrapped completely around the side of Target and curled all the way to the BACK OF THE BUILDING!!!! I spotted a friend from high school in line asking what all the hoot and holler was about and he told me that it was for the flat screen tv that was on sale for $197. He was about 100 people from the front of the line. I asked him how long he had been standing there, assuming that he got there around 3:00, when he informed me that he got there at 1:00am!!!!!! and he was that far back in line! Now I thought that was crazy! They had security guards and everything guarding the door! It wasn’t to be taken lightly! And as soon as the doors opened at 4:00 it was definitely a mad dash to the electronics! I swear one lady was in and then walking out of Target with her flat screen TV in under 3  minutes!!!! Besides the great deal on the TV, target didnt have too many other “amazing sales” besides their movies. That is by far a Target favored item, is their very low priced dvds. However Kohles on the other hand was booming with ways for people to save money! I ended up buying candles and coffee mugs and before I knew it I saved over $80. Kohles opened at 3am, and when I was driving past the mall around 2:30 the Kohles parking lot was packed!! Black Friday.. I am going to have to say you were a huge success!

The Smoke of a Not-so-distant Fire

Tuesday, December 7th, 2010

A Disregard for Rules: Smokers on Campus

     Are you one of the 81% of people who don’t smoke cigarettes, and have you ever wondered why you have to be subjected to second-hand smoke? One of the rules on this campus is that smokers can smoke only under the white tents located on various places on campus; unfortunately, very few smokers bother to do this. Every time I walk on campus, I am subjected to the smell of cigarette smoke rather than the clean air that should be circulating around. Smoke-filled air is unhealthy to breathe; it provokes asthma and complicates comfortably walking from one class to the next. Another bigger issue is why does CR have this rule if they do not enforce it? It’s not illegal to smoke on campus, however, when smokers start cramming what they’re doing down other peoples throats its unfairness makes people mad. In fact, if smokers had a sense of smell, than I am sure they would also agree that being subjected to second hand smoke is unfair. What it really comes down to is that the 19% of people are free to smoke but the other 81% of people do not want to smell it!* Beyond this is the fact that non-smokers often are forced to walk a detour.

         It’s well known that CR is a campus where walking is essential to get to class and it’s bad enough you have to be subjected to sitting next to someone who smells heavily of cigarette smoke, but every time you are walking up and down hills or turning a corner you have to be exposed to second hand smoke as well. And when you are stuck walking behind someone with his or her trail of smoke in your face, it becomes very frustrating to deal with after a while. It’s more than just a matter of lack of common courtesy, now it’s turned into the smokers making a statement saying, “hey I am going to smoke here and you can’t do a thing about it”. These smokers have no clue how they smell because they’re so addicted to cigarettes, they can’t even begin to imagine what its like for people who don’t. Whenever they are asked to move to a designated smoking area, the majority of them will demonstrate a bad attitude. This behavior shows a complete and total disregard for others rights.

Smoking has been a problem for years on this campus and it’s an issue that has failed to be addressed successfully. Smokers have turned a beautiful campus into a large outdoor ashtray. Littered with cigarette butts and smell of second hand smoke wherever you go, its not just a bad look/smell for the campus but also a great inconvenience for the many non-smoking students. To fix this any smoker caught smoking in a non-smoking area should be told by campus security to go smoke under the white tents.  CR like most places in America has non-smoking and smoking areas. You would not find someone smoking on a airplane or inside the Bay Shore Mall so why would anyone think the same rules do not apply on CR’s campus?

CR VP Explains College Cutback Decisions

Tuesday, December 7th, 2010

Dissecting Flaws and Uncovering Truths

Saturday, December 4th, 2010

It’s a Friday night, and for the past few days you have had a horrible sore throat. You’re convinced it’s strep, and know quite well that it can’t go away without the help of anti-biotics. So you decided to go to the local emergency room, where you’ll wait for the next six hours, only for a doctor to sit with you for five minutes to determine you do indeed have strep throat. With insurance, the hospital and medication runs about one hundred and thirty dollars, and without the insurance, nearly eight hundred dollars. This circumstance leaves many who do not have insurance at a cross road, pay a large chunk of money to not be sick or stay sick, miss work or school and infect the people around them. Today there are over 50 million people without health insurance, and situations like the one above occur all too often. Americans today are surrounded by ideologies, many of which envelop the health care system, and in turn affect the perceptions of the issues surrounding them. Howard Zinn, a historian, playwright, and social activist, defines ideology as “ A dominant pattern of ideas.” Ideology comes down to culture, and how ideas are encouraged and pushed into the heads of thinking people. Zinn believes that the ideas behind ideologies are safe, for the reason that they don’t threaten recognized wealth and power, which is why so many of these ideologies go unnoticed. In present day society we are convinced to believe that ideologies are purely the thoughts that come from our own minds, when in reality, we are unknowingly influenced by our families, communities, and cultures.

Not all ideologies are accepted, and the people who go against them, are not necessarily accepted as well. This is the situation of Michael Moore, creator of Fahrenheit 9/11 and Sicko, two very controversial documentaries dealing with ideologies of the American people. In Sicko, Moore discusses numerous ideologies of the American health care system, and cleverly dissects the flaws and uncovers the truth about other health care systems around the world. In the film, Moore takes us from Great Britain, France, Canada, and Cuba and back to the United States where he compares the practices of each country to that of America’s. Moore discusses one very important ideology throughout Sicko, that of, is socialism really as horrible as Americans make in out to be? Americans have been taught to think the only efficient way a government can be run is with a democracy, and nothing else. Because of this, we have a tendency to view countries, which use socialism or capitalism, as bad and obviously not as good as the United States. In doing so, we blind ourselves from seeing how these other countries do in fact have great health care systems, the majority of them, better than ours. Dancing around a very touchy subject, Moore tries to convey his opinion on whether or not socialism is bad, by giving statistical, anecdotal, and testimonial types of evidence, each equally important in changing the minds of his viewers.

Along with the ideology’s Moore shows us in his film Sicko, we are faced with ideologies everyday, unknowingly. From choosing a religious faith, to deciding if you’re a democrat or republican, we are brought back to Zinn’s definition of an ideology, a dominant pattern of ideas. Every situation you are put into deals with a pattern of ideas, and some of those situations become dominant patterns. With choosing a religious faith, many times it is decided by parents, who force a dominant pattern of ideas on their children, or by the community in which a child is brought up. As human beings we must always keep an open mind to the ever changing world that surrounds us, and with the ideologies that have consumed us, it is getting more difficult as time goes on.
There is one last question we must ask ourselves, and that is, why do people as a whole have such a problem admitting when something is not working? It took centuries for the development of equal rights, for women to vote, for the acceptance of gay rights, so lets not let our health care system become shadowed by ideologies from the past.

-Michelle Stacey