Making a BIGG change on campus

Courtney Bailey, Staff Writer

live_photo16815513With the honor of a DuPont grant recently being awarded to Wingate 
University, both faculty and students have begun collaborating together to form a new sustainability group that will hopefully launch the campus and local community into a more environmental existence. From energy meters being installed on campus to an “Earth Week” planned for the upcoming spring semester. The visionary ideas of this group are already beginning to take form in very exciting ways.

Initially called Blue and Gold Makes Green, the sustainability group now possesses a catchy acronym for its name: BIGG. This stands for “Bulldogs Into Going Green”. The acronym comes from the creative suggestions of Professor Debbi Brock and her marketing team. Their involvement, as well as that of the Student Government Association and faculty, is passionate about sustainability making BIGG an all-encompassing organization.

“This is a group for everyone,” Dr. Catherine Wright, a theology and ethics professor and faculty advisor to BIGG, said. “Every person has a talent that is needed in this group. Whether you’re a football player, a journalist, a swimmer—everybody has a place at the table of the sustainability group. Everyone is needed. The only way to make sustainable change is to have everyone involved.”

Dr. Wright feels that this sustainability group has the potential to turn into an extremely positive component of the university and surrounding community. Provided that students take the initiative to become involved and have their voices heard.

“Many people are passionate about this on campus and would like to see sustainability as part of our plan moving forward,” Dr. Wright acknowledged. “This group is here to get ideas from students. We want to make sure everyone’s voice is heard.”

The open-forum approach to BIGG is hopefully what will make it successful and sustainable for years to come. The DuPont grant requires its university recipient to create a more sustainable campus, and in order to accomplish this change at Wingate, multiple organizations must be involved. BIGG seeks to draw in members from all registered student organizations, faculty and the Wingate community.

“Faculty and students need to know that this committee plans on being around for years and years to come,” Trevor McKenzie, a junior Mathematics major and member of BIGG, said.“But the only way that we can make anything happen is if the whole campus is in on it. Make it a call to action. Nothing can happen with just one group.”

Kyle Ferrebee, a junior Business Management major and member of BIGG, also echoed the sentiments of Dr. Wright and McKenzie. “I believe that students, faculty, and even the town of Wingate need to understand that the group is still trying to construct itself, and that it has a huge opportunity to positively impact the entire Wingate community—if, and only if, it receives some meaningful participation from motivated members of the campus and community that wish to leave a positive legacy.”

BIGG hopes to further educate the campus on its purpose and future goals in the upcoming spring semester through projects, events, and lectures. As of right now, the group is still attempting to establish its identity.

On November 18, the group began the process of adopting its constitution and by-laws. All students, faculty, and local community members are welcome to attend the weekly BIGG meetings on Wednesdays at 7 p.m. located in Hayes. “We need the campus to reach out for change,” McKenzie said. “We invite anyone to come to our weekly meetings. Anyone can help.”

Edited by: Brooke Griffin and Kyndra Sanden

 

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Assassins Creed: Syndicate gives players just what they want

Staff Writer Danny Stueber

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Last year, Assassins Creed: Unity was a glitchy mess that was not fun to play and had multiple things in game making you feel that you had to pay real world money to unlock them. This year, Assassins Creed: Syndicate fixes many problems from last years game while also adding new features to make this the best game in the series since Assassins Creed 4: Black Flag.

Presentation:

Since 2007 there have been nine main games in the Assassins Creed franchise but since Assassins Creed 3 in 2012 it has not mattered if you have played the other games. Syndicate is kind of a sequel to Black Flag but only in the way that they mention it a few times in dialogue.

Syndicate takes place it the late 1800s during the industrial boom in London. You play as Jacob and Evie Frye, twin assassins whose goal is to eliminate the villainous group known as the Templars whom the order of Assassins has been fighting with for generations. Along the way you will meet and interact with Charles Dickens, Karl Marx, Thomas Edison, and even the Queen of England herself.

The city itself looks pretty good all considering and I never got tired of running around it for the 20 hours I spent in it. You see children workers, crime in the streets; carriages with police escorts and more, that all make you feel like you are in the correct time period. Unity last year might have been bad but it did look amazing being set in France which I give credit to over Syndicate. The city is nice but very dreary and not as graphically pleasing as Unity was.

Everything looks how it should though and that is all you can ask for. The animations of characters also look very nice. When you’re fighting and are surrounded by many enemies your character never moves in a jerky motion. It is always smooth and nice to watch and play.

I will say however that this game is not free of glitches entirely. Over my week of playing this game I had more bugs than I have ever seen in a game I have played before. Sometimes characters would not move with me so I would continue to walk and see my arm stretch all the way across the road. Sometimes my character would jump onto the street and crumple like paper almost falling through the world. I exited a cut scene and my character was totally invisible for almost five minuets while I was still able to play until I reset the game. None of this ruined my time though and were just quick laughs. The extreme happened though when the game hard crashed three different times in two days where I had to end up resetting my Xbox every time. That kind of thing should not happen and not as frequently as it did.

Gameplay:

Playing the game feels a lot like any other Assassins Creed game before it. You run, hide, climb, etc. to assassinate your targets and take over the city. The climbing and movement in general is smooth but just like any other game in the franchise you will find your character flying off in a direction you didn’t intend and you just curse to yourself about it. The one change is the addition of a grappling hook to help you climb and cover gaps faster which now that I have used it I will never be happy with another game in the franchise without it.

Like I said at the beginning, you play as twins, which means you can change between the brother and sister anytime you want. Even though the game tells you Jacob is more for fighting and Evie is more for stealth however I never found them to play too differently. Other than missions that made you play as a certain one I would just stick with Evie because she was a better character over her brother (he is just annoying and hard headed compared to her) and because they felt so similar to control.

The whole gang aspect also was not that appealing to me. You could have members of your gang help you in situations like fighting and escaping but the combat was so easy that I never felt like I needed the help. Really, you’re just over powered the whole game as long as you do not try to rush through the story. It was nice to have the option of help though and your gang growing really helped you feel that your power was progressing.

Conclusion:

The story is enjoyable and when I finished it all I felt like I had a good run and had a lot of fun. At the end of the day that’s what you hope for from a game is that you had fun with it. The characters don’t vary enough to constitute being different, the real world aspect that is shoe horned in is dumb and makes no sense to new players, the bugs were everywhere, and the city itself is kind of forgettable compared to past locations. It is fun to play though and rewards you every step of the way so you always have something to look forward to. I can say that Syndicate is in the top three of the series and shows that even though the ball was dropped with last years installment this franchise can still find ways to be new and fun.

 

Assassins Creed: Syndicate 8/10 (Xbox One version)

StUeBs13 = Xbox Gamer tag

Stuebs_13 = PSN account

Edited by Rob Gay

Wingate commissioner receives new Heart

Ali Gallagher and Ashley Adkins, Staff Writers

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Wingate Town Commissioner John Mangum is on his way to a full recovery after having a heart transplant on May 20. The 70-year-old Mangum had been on the transplant list going on 11 months before he got the call that there was a heart available. He has been dealing with heart issues for several years beginning in 1984 when he had his first coronary bypass. At the age of 39 he had undergone six bypasses. John was doing well until two years ago when his health worsened.  His cardiologist forewarned him that this time would be very crucial for his health and exercise was necessary. During this time Mangum stayed in good shape, missing little to no days walking.  In June 2014, Mangum was placed on the transplant list and it wasn’t for 11 months later that a match was found. They were encouraged that it was a good, strong match.

Since the surgery, Mangum’s wife, Linda, has been taking care of him making sure that he recovers smoothly.  The two have been married for what Mangum calls “42 glorious years” and they have lived in Wingate all of their lives. John has been a Wingate Commissioner for going on 18 years and is currently in his fifth term. Aside from being a commissioner, Mangum is a long time member of Wingate Baptist Church, Lions Club, and the Wingate Fire Department. Mangum retired from Wingate University where he was the director of Cannon Athletic Complex. Mangum’s involvement has made him one of the most well-known people within the town of Wingate. He enjoys all that he does but the most rewarding for him is “being able to know all of the citizens and working with them.” When John’s health worsened his support system only strengthened.

Linda never left Mangum’s side throughout the process, missing only one day of visiting him in the 12 weeks that he spent in the hospital. Her one word to sum up how she felt during that time was “tired.” She was constantly going back and forth to care for and visit Mangum. But despite the hardships that the couple was put through, Linda says that she “never feared losing him” and stressed the idea that “there’s always something left to do.” She always had hope that he would get better and she would never give up on him.

When Mangum had gone through the grueling process and was allowed to, at last, return home to his beloved Wingate, he was met with more love than he could have ever imagined. On Sept. 15, there was a Wingate Town Commissioners meeting. The other commissioners had set out a name tag in his usual spot at the table, but no one knew if he was actually going to show up. But despite his recent return and recovering state, Mangum did make it. Linda said that “he surprised them by showing up” and that “once they all got done crying, they proceeded” with the meeting. When asked how his first meeting after being back from his heart transplant went, Mangum simply stated, “It was very good.” He joined in with his fellow commissioners to talk about a request from the Fire Department, chicken ordinances, and the Lions Club, which he had to give details about since he is a proud member himself.

Never the one to let anything get him down, Mangum says that he is doing “great” after the transplant. He has overcome his long-term problem of having a bad heart and says, “I’m in pretty good shape for the shape I’m in.” Linda agreed, adding “He is back to doing, truthfully, everything that he did before, except mow the yard” and that he has lost some of the strength and endurance that he once had.

The two of them ended with the message that they are “most thankful for the donor,” even though they do not know who it is, and begged that “everyone please think about becoming a registered donor.”

Edited by Rob Gay

Mixed Feelings for All Access Meal Plan

Written by: Øystein Fjeldberg


This fall Wingate University implemented a new system for meal plans. The All Access plan provides students with virtually unlimited meals over the course of the semester. There are some limits, but they do little to inhibit the students needs. Students have 999 meals that they can spend over the course of the semester, or an average of 62 meals a week.

At least 15 minutes has to pass between each meal, which means that a student can’t go to the Klondike and get six meals at once as an example. As a result, it is nearly impossible to run out of meals. Then why are some students complaining?

Up until last semester, students had a default option of 19 non-transferable meals a week that could be used at the school’s cafeteria or at the Klondike. Students had the option to switch over to a meal plan with fewer meals a week in return for more Bulldog Bucks (the school’s currency that can be used to buy food at campus restaurants such as Subway, Einstein Bros Bagels, and Pizza Hut).

With the All Access plan, however, this is no longer an option. Students that prefer getting their meals outside of the cafeteria and Klondike are left with a ton of meals that they will never use.

Student-athletes are perhaps those who have benefitted from the change the most. An unlimited supply of meals is an advantage for them, as they won’t have to worry about running out of meals prematurely in between practices and competitions. Wingate University is attended by many student-athletes compared to its small student population, and thus it makes sense to have a meal plan catered to this group.

As of November 12, Leif-Henning Klüver, a member of the men’s swimming team, had already spent 282 meals, which means that he has averaged 24 meals a week since the beginning of the semester. In other words, he has used more meals than there has been separate meals at the cafeteria.

It is not just athletes, however, that embrace the liberty provided by the new meal plan. “I won’t have to worry about when I go to the cafeteria during the week,” said student Johnny Rivera showing his support for the new meal plan . If he comes to the cafeteria and realizes that he is not that hungry, he can eat a quick meal, and then return later if he chooses to.

Even though there are benefits to the new meal plan it has left some students unhappy coming at the cost of their ability to choose alternative options for food. Maybe the best course of action would be to re-implement the possibility of choosing alternative meal plans, and leave the All Access Plan as one of the options for those who see it as beneficial to them.

Edited by: Danny Stueber and Meredith Lalor

Seniors lead WU Volleyball to global success

Tyler Smith, Staff Writer

Senior volleyball players, Iris Brewer (#5) and Shelly Stumpff (#13), came to Wingate with the hopes of playing high level collegiate volleyball while experiencing everything that college has to offer.

However, neither one of them could have guessed that they would have a combined eight South Atlantic Conference regular season titles and be visit six countries in teir four years here at Wingate University.

Stumpff, a math education major, who is an outside hitter for the bulldogs, came to Wingate from Iowa City, Iowa. She fell in love with the enticing competitiveness of the team, as well as the vast educational opportunities offered.

Stumpff’s freshman season was good enough to earn her SAC and Region Freshman of the Year honors. In her career, she has accumulated over a 1,000 kills and currently holds the record for most aces in school history. Now in her senior season, she has been awarded with SAC Player of the Year.

While she has had a decorated career as an athlete, being a member of the Wingate volleyball program has brought her more than awards and accolades. Stumpff had the opportunity to travel overseas to play with other collegiate volleyball players from across the country in Pula, Croatia in the European Global Challenge Tournament.

“Going to Croatia with this team was my first time going out of the country,” Stumpff said. “One of my favorite parts was getting to hang out with the Montenegro team because I learned a lot about their culture and also what other people think about our cultures.”

Getting to represent America overseas playing the sport she loved was a once in a lifetime opportunity within itself. Stumpff says that the eye opening aspects came during other parts of the trip.

“The biggest thing for me was learning how ignorant we, as Americans, are compared to other cultures,” Stumpff said. “They know so much about our culture and I had never even heard of Croatia until I got there.”

Stumpff’s classmate, Iris Brewer, is also a product of the Midwest, hailing from Cincinnati, Ohio, where she was an Academic All-American. She set her sights on attending Wingate because she felt like it was a place where she could be apart of a successful volleyball team, but she could also get involved in different organizations on campus outside of volleyball.

Brewer is an environmental biology major and secretary of the Student Athlete Advisory Committee. Outside of athletics, she is a member of the Alpha Xi Delta sorority where she is the academic achievement chair, and she is also the new member orientation chair of the Black Student Union.

She also works in the Office of International Studies, a job she is more than qualified for having traveled overseas three times in her tenure as a Bulldog.

Brewer went overseas before she even sat in her first class as a freshman. The summer before she arrived at Wingate, Coach Shelton Collier recommended her for a spot on the Bring It Promotions South East Summer Tour Team with two of her future teammates. They flew to Munich, Germany to train with the team before traveling through Austria, Italy and Slovenia to and finally stopping in Pula, Croatia, where the tournament took place.

“Traveling across the world without my parents at 17 showed me that I could take care of myself and opened my eyes to the possibilities in the world,” Brewer said. “We visited Dachau when in Germany, which I had heard about in history class, but history is so much more powerful in person, especially this concentration camp.”

Brewer got the opportunity to play with some of the best collegiate volleyball players in the world, an opportunity she would not have had if she had chosen to go to another school.

Not only did Stumpff and Brewer play overseas individually, they also traveled as a team to Nicaragua the summer before their sophomore year for yet another trip that would teach them much more than how to be a better volleyball player.

According to Brewer, traveling to one of the poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere forced the team to reflect on how fortunate they were to grow up in the United States not only because of the volleyball opportunities provided to them but also the life opportunities.

“In Nicaragua, my favorite part of the entire trip was the community service and going to the school and playing with the kids for like an hour,” Stumpff said. “The smiles on their faces I will never forget.”

Both Stumpff and Brewer came to Wingate looking for a well balanced college experience with the opportunity to play high level volleyball and get involved on campus. Four years later, four SAC regular season titles, three Elite Eight appearances, two Academic All-District honors and one SAC Player of the Year award, the seniors more than made their mark on the volleyball court.

However, it was the experiences they had overseas exploring new cultures that opened their eyes to life outside of the sport of volleyball and America consisted of.

Edited by: Kyndra Sanden

Wishing Facebook was still considered “TheFacebook”

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Kyndra Sanden, Staff Writer

Facebook is now the largest social networking site in the world. According to Zephoria.com, one out of seven people on earth is on Facebook; over 300 million photos are uploaded per day and five new profiles are created every second. That would include people like your mother, your grandma, your boss, and even your neighbor that lives three blocks away on Facebook uploading pictures of their dog.

All college students can relate to a time in their life when a friend has said, “Go check your Facebook. Did you see that picture? Did you see that video?” Now, instead of it coming from your friend. It is coming from your mother or grandma who constantly stay on Facebook creeping on so many people and “posting”, “liking”, “commenting”, and my mother’s favorite, “tagging” people in pointless things.

“My mom always tags me in all of her statuses she posts, and there is nothing more annoying when you get all the notifications from her friends who commented on the status saying something so pointless.” said Delana Grogan, a junior pre-veterinary major.

Founder and CEO of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, did not originally create Facebook for everyone of all ages to use. It was first launched to Harvard students, then to universities in the Boston area, and then onto every university in North America.

It was originally designed to create a connection between college students at different universities. In September of 2006, things began to change. “TheFacebook” was changed to “facebook.com”, and Zuckerberg launched a new feature allowing anyone with a registered email address the ability to sign up for an account. That is when the pandemic of our parents and grandparents taking over social networks began.

People between the ages of 35 and 54 now make up 31.1% of the users on Facebook. Your parent’s generation has taken over Facebook and we, as the millennial generation, absolutely hate it.

“I don’t really use Facebook anymore. It’s almost like older people have ran us younger kids out of Facebook. Granted, we are all about Instagram and Twitter now, but I think that’s because they haven’t taken those over yet.” said Megan Chapman, a senior psychology major.

“I love Facebook, and I admit that I am sort of obsessed with it. It has allowed me to reconnect with so many of my lost friends and classmates over the years,” said Stacey Mowers, mom to senior PR major, Emma Mowers, “I definitely believe that my age has taken over Facebook. We didn’t mean to do it. We just realized why our kids were always on it and what we were missing out on in social media world.”

At a net worth of $245 billion dollars and over 968 million people logging onto Facebook every day, Facebook is now becoming a household name and paving the way for future sites of social media.

Edited by: Rob Gay

‘Enrique’s Journey’ author speaks on immigration issues

Courtney Bailey – Staff Writer

nazarioWelcoming refugees, reforming foreign policy, and extending a helping hand to those in need are only the beginning of award-winning author and journalist Sonia Nazario’s ideas for solving the hardships and horrors of immigration to the United States. On the evening of Oct. 27, the author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Enrique’s Journey spoke to an audience of nearly 500 students about the migration struggles of a young boy from Honduras and thousands like him. From violent beatings to gang rape, Nazario made the audience explicitly aware of the overwhelming difficulties immigrants face trying to cross the border.

Wingate University’s Austin Auditorium was alive with excitement and anticipation, hushing to an attentive silence as Nazario took the stage. Though she was of average height, the stature of Nazario’s character, and passion for the topics on which she spoke commanded the room, instantly drawing the attention of both students and other locals in the community.

“It’s an important issue,” Nazario began as she introduced the topic of her speech. “And a local issue. It’s a story of migrating to North Carolina.”

Nazario recounted the highlights of Enrique’s Journey to the audience, sharing how this 11 year-old boy traveled all the way from Honduras to Cary, North Carolina, to find his mother while riding freight trains, enduring beatings, and battling a drug addiction. Enrique is but one example of thousands like him who face such horrific circumstances in their home country that they are willing to make the dangerous journey to the United States, only to be inflicted with yet another trauma: the U.S. judicial system.

Nazario told how living in Argentina during the “Dirty War” in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s shaped her into the advocate she is today. After she saw two journalists killed in the streets of Buenos Aires for trying to tell the truth about the war, Nazario decided she, too, wanted to be a journalist and make the world aware of the tragedies happening in Central America.

“I saw the power of words that day—the power of storytelling,” Nazario said. “I wanted to be a truth-teller. I want to grab my readers by the throat and take them for a ride through worlds they might not have otherwise known.”

Nazario continues to place herself in the shoes of these immigrants to better tell their stories, urged the audience to do “the right thing” and look at America’s immigration issue not as a political issue, but rather as a humanity issue.

“I hope everyone will join me in being a voice for refugee children,” Nazario said as she came to a close. “Increase foreign aid. Lobby to increase the number of refugees we take in. I know that if we push with the determination I saw on top of that train, we can slowly, surely change things in Central America.This is a true test for our great country. Are we going to rise to the level of humanity that is required of us?”

Several audience members gave Nazario a standing ovation at the end of her speech as loud applause filled the auditorium, showcasing the poignant impact and inspiration Nazario had evoked in the crowd.

“Overall, the Lyceum was amazing,” freshman student Aji Njie said. “We were all amazed by the things she had to endure, and everyone was touched, honestly. My biggest take-away is not to take things for granted.”

Edited by Brooke Griffin