Archive for November 2011

Students get a smelly surprise in shower

November 15, 2011

By Nicole Chadwick

Like many freshmen, Lori Schachle chose to live in Colonnades because it was brand new. She liked living there until she found an unwelcome surprise in her shower.

Nearly two inches of sewage spewed out of Schachle’s shower drain on Oct. 1, but Physical Plant didn’t fix it until the next day. She and her suitemates spent nearly 24 hours smelling sewage.

“It was just really disgusting for a long time,” Schachle said. “It shouldn’t have been like that at all.”

More than a few dozen new buildings are going up around campus. The Station at Mill Point with 25 buildings, Colonnades with three buildings, and the Global Village with four buildings will be completed by 2014. That means more than a thousand students will be moving into brand new residence halls.

According to Director of Planning, Design and Construction Management for Elon University, Neil Bromilow, every building is inspected before students move in, but construction crews admit they’re not going to catch everything.

“You’re always gonna find something.” Bromilow said. “Bottom line is you can never say never. There will always be something. We minimize it and then recover from it quickly.”

Flaws in the design and construction mistakes contribute to these problems, Bromilow said.

Schachle knows there will always be problems, but that doesn’t make hers any better.

“It smelled horrible, and the whole hall smelled bad,” Schachle said. “I think it really sucks for someone to have to go through that. I know that they can’t fix it, but maybe there’s something they could do about it.”

Although her shower is now clean, she hopes these problems won’t appear in the new buildings.

To see the complete construction plan, click here.

Student loan debt still a growing problem for students

November 15, 2011

By Mallory Lane

Student loans are the number one cause of debt among Americans today and for Durice White and her family, it’s no different.White decided to attend Elon because she loved the interaction between the students and professors and all the opportunities the many organizations offered. But after graduating in 2009, the memories of attending Elon weren’t the only thing sticking around for White.

“My student loan I took out my junior and senior year, (was) about $15,000,” White said.  “My parent’s loan is much more substantial because they took a loan out every year I came here. I did not have a scholarship and we had to do a loan.”

Last month, President Obama came out with a new plan to help keep student loans from piling up. The plan caps student loan payments at 10 percent of their discretionary income and forgives debt after 20 years.

After graduating college, students have up to six months to find a source of income before payments for their loans kick in. But what happens to those who don’t find a job after graduating is troublesome for White.

“Mounds and mounds of interest come up on that,” White said. “So their monthly payment went from $201 to $325 to now $415, and when you don’t have a salary position, it’s kind of difficult to make those payments.”

However Patrick Murphy, director of Financial Planning at Elon, said that while more students are asking about loans, most Elon graduates are able to pay them back.

As for White, she was able to find employment with the Elon Alumni office and for now, is on track to pay back her loans while enjoying Elon a second time around.

“It’s different being a student and then being a professional,” White said. “But it’s great to be back.”

Music major serenades with the saxophone from his dorm window

November 14, 2011

By Ryan Greene and Kathleen Harper

North Area residents are treated to saxophone music on an almost nightly basis, however, not many people know who the man behind the music actually is.

Freshman A.J. Burgess plays his saxophone from his third floor dorm window. At night, Burgess’ saxophone can be heard all the way from the north area of campus to just outside of Mosley.

Although Burgess plays for an audeience by keeping his window open for all to hear, he says he likes to keep a low profile by generally playing his music with the lights off in his room.

“I’m a pretty shy guy naturally, and I don’t like all the attention,” Burgess said.

The song he is famous for playing is from the hit YouTube video, “Sexy Sax Man.” Burgess started playing the song after hearing his friend Mark Inge play his saxophone in the Colonnades.

So far, the responses to Burgess’ playing have been positive, especially from people living on his floor.

“I saw him walking down the stairwell the other day with the saxophone in hand, playing the stereotypical song,” said freshman Matt Albers. “He’s hanging out the window and all sorts of stuff. It’s cool. It’s very cool.”

Burgess says his favorite part about his hobby is hearing all the reactions he gets from people listening outside.

“Probably the best reaction I’ve got…there were people outside walking and they started singing along to it,” he said. I hadn’t heard the song before my friend Mark had told me about it and it was nice that people knew the song and they were singing, too.”

Although Burgess, a music education major, is known for his nightly sax music, he is also heavily involved in various music programs, including the Elon Jazz Band and the brass quintet. In addition to the saxophone, Burgess plays the tuba, trumpet and trombone.

“I’m just a guy who likes music, I guess,” Burgess said.

Elon student organization raises awareness of veteran’s service

November 13, 2011

By Brian Mezerski

More than 20 students and community volunteers spent their Veterans Day helping the Team Hero organization build care packages to be sent to veterans.

Team Hero is a student organization that raises funds for veteran and military support. Clara Martin started the program last year and is grateful for the help at the drive.

“I loved how excited the volunteers were and it was heartwarming to see them share my passion for supporting members of the military,” Martin said. “It was great to see how much they really cared to put together a care package for a total stranger that they will probably never meet.”

Vietnam veteran David Burnett Jr. joined the volunteers because he remembers receiving support when he was overseas.

“It makes me feel proud that people are thinking about troops overseas,”  Burnett said. “It felt good to know that somebody back home was caring about us.”

But Martin has a greater purpose for Team Hero than simply hosting events.  She hopes students involved gain a better appreciation for those involved in the military.“The goal of this event was to remind students, faculty and staff that Veterans Day needs to be remembered, and the least we can do is say ‘thank you.’” Martin said.

Team Hero raises funds for Paws and Stripes, a nonprofit organization in New Mexico.  The nonprofit provides service dogs for wounded veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury at no cost.  Martin set a goal last year to raise $2,000 for Paws and Stripes, enough to sponsor a veteran to enroll in the program.  She said they raised more than that, allowing not only a veteran but also a dog to enroll.

Reaching her goal encouraged Martin to organize this month’s Veteran’s Day care package drive. They used close to 450 student donations, which were assembled into over 70 packages. She also plans to host a softball tournament to generate more support for Paws and Stripes.

“The more people that know about Team Hero, the more veterans and active duty service members receive the attention and care they deserve,” Martin said.

To learn more about joining Elon’s Team Hero, visit their blog at elonteamhero.blogspot.com.

Car windows broken around campus

November 13, 2011

By Jeff Ackermann

Car windows were damaged on Lebanon Ave.

Several students woke up Sunday morning and found their car windows shattered.

The damages were reported on Lebanon Ave. by the Hook, Brannock, and Barney dorms and on East College Ave.

Sophomore Kim Lilienthal was away for the weekend and found one of her car windows shattered Sunday afternoon on East College Ave. by the tennis courts.  She called Campus Safety & Police who directed her to Elon Town Police.

“The University should be supportive of their students and their property and protect them because that’s their job more than the Elon Town,” Lilienthal said.

The culprits would be easy to find if there were cameras on the street, Lilienthal said, but there are currently no cameras near that area.

“I don’t think it would take too much effort to have a camera on the street corner or have a campus security vehicle parked here,” Lilienthal added.

Sophomore Ashley Fowler also found her car damaged Sunday morning.  She said several reports similar to this were reported in the past but nothing has been done about it.

“Campus Security, even when I talked to them, they even said ‘that’s a high crime rate area just because there’s no cameras there,’” Fowler said. “I understand it’s an added cost to add cameras here but I think it’d be worth it.”

Stay with Phoenix14News for more information as this story develops.

Phoenix14News: November 9th, Thursday Update

November 13, 2011

Athlete’s tweets earn him suspension

November 9, 2011

By David Hodges

Running back Jamal Shuman was suspended indefinitely by head football coach Jason Swepson after the senior tweeted his frustration about his lack of playing time.

Shuman was a star sophomore year, leading the team in rushing, but since an ankle injury in the 2010 season he’s rarely seen the field. Coach Swepson has kept Shuman on the bench since, but that didn’t keep the running back off of twitter. Shuman complained about his lack of playing time in several expletive filled rants to his followers. Senior Adam Lawson warned the running back that the Athletic Department could see what he was saying too.

“When you use twitter like that it’s a vehicle to communicate, but it’s also a vehicle to get you in trouble,” Lawson said. “And I knew instantly when I saw Shuman’s tweets that something was going to go wrong and he was kind of shooting himself in the foot metaphorically.”

But it’s something the running back should have known too. The Elon Student-Athlete Handbook warns athletes that, “the expectations of all student-athletes is to refrain from the use of videos, web sites such as Facebook, MySpace or like modes of technology that cast a negative image on you, your team and athletics department and while doing associates you in any manner with Elon University athletics.” It even states that coaches will be looking over student-athlete’s personal sites for violations of the policy.

Athletic Director Dave Blank also says that athletes and coaches have a meeting when the school year starts to talk about the dos and dont’s of social media. He also said that while the Athletic Department is reviewing the case, the incident with Shuman raises awareness of the issue across all sports teams at Elon and that coaches now are more likely to talk to their players about online social sites.

Phoenix14News: November 7th Newscast

November 8, 2011

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Proposed GST changes voted down

November 8, 2011

By Katie O’Brien

New buildings are going up, sidewalks are being added, but changes to the general studies courses that are the foundation of an Elon education will not be happening.

A proposal to change General Studies was voted down at a specially called faculty meeting Friday, Oct. 28. After 15 years under the current system, and more than two years of research, surveys and forums to craft the proposal, the results came down to a vote divided almost in half.

Some of the proposed changes would include eliminating the required health class, adding an extra four semester hours of a foreign language and standardizing the Global Experience course.

But the changes would not increase the number of hours each student needs to achieve in most cases, according to committee co-chairs and Elon professors Tom Mould and Rosemary Haskell. Less than 20 percent of students who did not test out of or place into a Foreign Language would experience an increase.

Registration would also be affected under the proposed changes to reflect the new course-by-course designations. Features to display all classes that qualify for each section would be added to OnTrack.

Faculty will meet again Wednesday to readdress the General Studies curriculum. Haskell and Mould would not object to repackaging the proposal to pass individual parts.

Other changes that were proposed are as follows:

  • Courses would be redistributed on a course-by-course basis into the new categories of
    • Textual Analysis
    •  Scientific Inquiry
    • The Natural World
    • Cultures and Societies
    • Invention, Creation and Critique
    •  Global Issues
  • Advanced Integrative Studies would be increased to 12 s.h. and could be fulfilled through a second major or a minor in the arts and sciences, a interdisciplinary minor or a pathway.
  • Pathway groups of three classes or more that would compose a directed curriculum in a specific area (i.e. Shakespeare in Modern Culture)
  • College Writing would be a Writing Seminar that could be taught by anyone who is qualified in English, not just an English faculty member.

Local school suffering from low funds

November 8, 2011

By Brandon Marshall

In October, the administration of the Elon Homes and Schools for Children announced that the Elon School in Elon, N.C. was for sale.

Since it’s opening in 2007, more than 7 million dollars has gone into funding the school by the administration. Now that the funds have decreased, the school is expected to close by the end of next year unless a buyer is found.

Fred Grosse, president of the Elon Homes and Schools for Children, is confident that a buyer will be found. Grosse blames the economy as one reason for last month’s announcement.“The stock market plummeted the exact first year we opened our school,” Grosse said. “So the operation the entire time this school has been opened has been in this recession.”Elon University freshman, Holly Smith, graduated from the Elon school last year and was saddened when she first heard about the sale. Smith is disappointed that undergraduates may not have similar experiences that she had her senior year if they had to seek another school to attend.

“I went to Austria my senior year, so that would be a big difference compared to other high schools I feel like,” Smith said.

And it’s not just past students who are sadden by the news. Current Spanish teacher Gloriana Carballo-Spitler enjoys every minute she has with her students. She jokingly says she can’t go back to teaching at public schools because she’s too spoiled with her students here.

“This is a very nice school, since it’s so small,” Carballo-Spitler said. “It’s just like a big family. You know everybody.”

The Elon School is the only independent college prep high school in Alamance County. About 75 percent of the student body would have to find other schools to attend if a buyer isn’t found to manage the institution next year.

Grosse has scheduled interviews this month and continues to look for either another school, investors or a group of parents to take ownership. And he is confident he’ll find a buyer before next fall.

“(The) primary goal is to not close at all,” Grosse said. “We are seeking to secure another school or nonprofit board to assume ownership and management. We think that is a reasonable expectation at this point and do not think the underclassmen will have to seek alternative schools.”


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