Tag: college

Hill: College isn’t all fun and games

Op-Ed

Breanna Hill, News Editor


College students do not receive enough credit for the hardships they face on a daily basis. College is usually associated with strictly partying, drinking, kicking back, and a continuing long list of other reckless hobbies that supposedly concoct our college lifestyles. It appears that college students are labeled as careless and daring nowadays just because a number of them attend a party here or there, or something of that nature.

Being a college student myself, I’ve had to deal with older adults assuming things when it comes to the subject of college, and don’t even ask me to count the number of times I’ve heard the whole ‘just be thankful you’re not in the workforce right now’ speech. I could probably quote you the whole lecture I’ve received from many different people by now. I get it. College isn’t THE HARDEST milestone that many young adults have to trudge through and conquer, but it definitely isn’t the easiest either.

A good portion of college students range from age eighteen to the early twenties, which means that they’re all still trying to figure out how to take care of themselves and be out on their own. Students go from being in high school, living with parents, and having a structured and scheduled life to then being out on their own, having unlimited freedom, and learning how to navigate all that at the exact same time. Most college students not only have to juggle 12+ hours of coursework, but also have to make a steady income to support themselves, stay active and involved on campus, and make sure to take care of themselves mentally, physically, and emotionally.

Why is there an overwhelming portion of today’s society who feels the need to make college seem like it’s a breeze? It’s not. Students deal with so much and it’s not appreciated, talked about, or seen as a real issue. We need to bring the problem up more. We need to discuss it with anybody who will listen so that maybe one day college students won’t just be seen as a rowdy bunch who throw parties every weekend, and sleep our way through life.

Advice with Breanna: College Tips and Tricks

 

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Breanna Hill, News Editor


The time you spend in college is meant to be some of the best years of your life. You are able to study a certain career pathway of your choosing, gain countless friendships and develop even more as a person. When attending college comes to mind, it can be a bit nerve-racking. It is easy for an upcoming, or even a current student’s mind to be swamped with certain topics and aspects of college life. To help with some of these worrying aspects here are a few tips and tricks to keep in mind throughout your college experience:

1. Get involved. It’s never too late to get involved, whether it be at the start of your freshman year, or even later on. Speaking from experience, I had a very uneventful freshman year. Getting involved not only helps with your resume but it can also help you establish connections with other students, and even break you out of your shell a bit. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out of your comfort zone—you’ll be amazed with how simply joining a club can affect your day-to-day life here on campus.

2. Go to class. Simple, right? Once you start off in college most students are eager to attend the parties, and have the time of their lives. It’s easy to steer away from the real reason you’re here. Our parents aren’t here to tell us we have to get up and go to class, and most of us depended on that in our earlier years of schooling. It’s now up to the student whether or not attending class should be a priority. Missing class means falling behind, and if you aren’t in control of the situation it could mean having to take the class over again, which of course is never fun.

3. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Unfortunately nowadays most people view asking for help as weak and cowardly, which couldn’t be more wrong. We all have our subjects that we excel in and we all have those subjects that we struggle with from time to time. When we struggle it is crucial that we ask for help, and realize that taking the extra time to speak to our professors will benefit us in the long run.

Make the most out of your college experience. Let loose when you should, and buckle down when needed. It’s all about making new memories and living each day to the fullest, while setting yourself up for a successful future. Try out these tips and tricks, and never be afraid to share your thoughts with me.

Want to get some advice about a topic that’s been clouding your mind lately? Email topics to chantynewstips@gmail.com to read about it in the following issue!

Do you want a degree for free?

President Barack Obama has announced a proposal to provide free community college education to any student with a 2.5 GPA. Too good to be true? Perhaps.

As someone considering a career in higher education, it’s hard for me to say that millions of dollars in funding (and likely new jobs) for community colleges isn’t the best thing. Maybe it is, maybe it isn’t.

Let’s first consider some implications that come along with such sweeping reform. First, the biggie: where in the world will this money come from? Many will answer: China, duh!

Everyone is well aware of the lackluster financial situation of the federal budget. Yet the president’s plan would cost $6 billion per year and $60 billion over 10 years.

The plan would also require states to opt-in to the program and provide 25 percent of the funding. Let’s stop here.

Alabama has already rejected an “opt-in” deal where the federal government has offered to pay: 100 percent of the costs for Medicaid expansion for the first three years, and 90 percent after that. Comparatively, it’s hard to imagine Alabama opting into the college plan, if it were to pass Congress.

But what if Alabama did opt in? What would it mean for education in Alabama? First off, it would mean thousands of Alabamians would have a shot at higher education that they never would have before.

On the other hand, the program would require states that opt in to “meet certain academic requirements.” Translation: “Schools who take the money will be subject to more federal academic regulations.”

This ambiguity can make a higher education professional cringe. As a condition, I would prefer to see those “certain requirements” spelled out before my school or state signed its collegiate programs over carte blanche.

The plan is modeled after a similar program signed into law by the State of Tennessee last year. In my State and Local Politics course (go back to sophomore year), we studied a theory that referred to states and localities as “laboratories of democracy.”

In this case, Tennessee is the laboratory. Free college education the experiment. With the Tennessee program being implemented in 2015, and no empirical evidence of success yet determined, some are concerned it’s a bit soon to be duplicating the experiment nationwide.

All these concerns aside, President Obama’s proposal faces an uphill battle in Congress – now completely controlled by Republicans. With an overwhelming conservative mandate from the 2014 midterm election, it’s doubtful many GOP members will support such a vast new spending measure.

Though it may not pass Congress, the plan is generating lots of buzz in the media, on campus and in the public.

The lasting effect of President Obama’s proposal may not be that community college becomes immediately free for thousands of Americans.

It may be that free higher education becomes a part of the discussion for millions of Americans. And that can be just as powerful as any bill in Congress.

Brett Johnson
Political Columnist

O’ Brother’s, where art thou?

With the announcement that Brother’s Bar is for sale, Jacksonville could be at risk of losing a piece of history over the course of the next few months.

Dan Nolen, owner and co-founder of the bar, opened the hotspot in 1976 with the help of his brother at about the time he graduated from Jacksonville State University.

“There was nothing for the students, no where for them to go,” Nolen said last week in an interview with Fox 6.

Originally called My Brother’s Bar, the nearly forty-year-old establishment has been a part of the university experience for students at JSU for decades.

Even though there is competition between Brother’s and Pelham’s, the experience at each establishment is a completely different one.

The tree stump stools at Brother’s attribute to the rustic atmosphere, which contrasts with the new age feel of Pelham’s.

No matter which bar students prefer, not having one of the bars in town will be a historic change to Jacksonville’s small-town records.

The announcement of the property going up for sale with King reality surprised other small-business owners in the community, too. Carol Watts, owner of Mad Hatter cupcakes just around the corner from Brother’s, said that she hates to see it go.

“Our parking lot is always full when they have a show,” Watts said.

When prompted about his reasoning behind selling the beloved hangout, Nolen told Fox, “It’s a younger person’s game now, it’s time to move on.”

The Charlie Daniels Band, Wet Willie, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Sister Hazel and Zac Brown are just a few of the numerous groups that have performed at the venue over the years. Greek life at JSU has rented out the bar many times since it has been open to the public.

Nothing is certain yet in regards to the bar closing its doors, even though there have been several inquiries about purchasing the property. As of now, no further events have been booked past December 5.

Nolen also told Fox that the “changing landscape in live entertainment and how it’s been affected by social media” are huge aspects he had to take into account when deciding the future of the beloved bar.

Alex McFry
Associate Editor