Archive for November 2011

Elon Elementary students attend mobile science center

November 21, 2011

By Ryan Greene

On Thursday, Nov. 17, fourth and fifth grade Elon Elementary students took a field trip to Holt Chapel to participate in hands-on science demonstrations.

The event was hosted by Elon University’s Assistant Professor of Biology Dr. Dave Gammon’s science without borders class.

Elon University students designed all the demonstrations, which included making magnetic jewelry and homemade ice cream. These activities were specifically geared towards involving the Elon Elementary in both a fun and educational way.

“Kids start out as little scientists,” Gammon said. “They are interested in how the world works and they want to understand everything.”

Karyn Parsons, a fourth grade teacher at Elon Elementary and also the co-leader of the science club, attended the event with the science club. Parsons believes that participating in the mobile science center gets her students excited about learning science.

“When they come back they’re just like ‘Wow we did this. This was so fabulous,’” Parsons said. “And they will go home and talk to their parents and say how great it was.”

The Elon University students participating in the event believed that this firsthand experience was a good way to show the Elon Elementary students how important science is.

“It’s going to prepare them for the future,” said Tony Woods, a sophomore in the science without borders class. “You’re going to be seeing a lot of science and technology in middle school, high school, and college.”

Gammon hopes to continue his mobile science center in the future.

“I think it’s a great opportunity for our students to engage in general science with the community,” Gammon said.

Veterans offered the chance to visit their memorial in the nation’s capitol

November 17, 2011

The men and women who served in World War II were only college aged when they left for war. When they came back and the victory parades ended they went straight into the work force, quietly restoring the economy, building the suburbs and raising their children.

Rotary Club 7690 brought 94 veterans on the Traid Flight of Honor to Washington D.C. to be recognized as they visited the World War II Memorial and other military monuments.

Their day started early as the veterans, their guardians and a medical staff gathered at the Piedmont Triad International Airport.

They took a chartered U.S. Airways flight to Reagan International Airport where their pathway from the gate all the way to security was lined with cheering supporters.

By 10:30 a.m. they had loaded the three buses, appropriately named Red, White and Blue, and were guided through Washington by a group of local motorcycle-riding Vietnam veterans and a police escort.

The first stop: the memorial that was dedicated to their own actions in 2004 under President George W. Bush. The World War II Memorial hosts 50 pillars representing each state and 4,000 gold stars representing the more than 400,000 Americans that died in the war.

Former Senator Bob Dole and his wife Elizabeth were instrumental in the fundraising for the memorial. They greeted the veterans and stayed to take pictures.

From there the veterans went to the National Museum of the U.S. Navy.

The veterans also took time to honor their fellow service men and women from the Korean and Vietnam wars by visiting their memorials further down the mall.

The Korean War started just a few years after World War II ended, but it is often called “The Forgotten War.”

There was a line to get to the Vietnam Memorial. Very few veterans could actually make it right up to the wall.

Then the  buses drove out past the Pentagon to The Air Force Memorial overlooking Washington. Its three spires represent the jet stream of fighter planes as they ascend into the air. It was while looking over the Washington Monument that a conversation was heard that encompassed the meaning of the trip.

One guide said to a group of veterans, “We need to wage peace.”

Even though these men had fought in one of the toughest, most wholly impactful wars in recent memory, they were at peace with the world. They had seen their friends killed next to them and they lived to share their experiences. Now that they have lived in a post-World War II world, they have the best insight into how to live to the fullest potential and with justice and a harmony that they fought to preserve.

The last memorial was the iconic Marine Corps Memorial, also known as the Iwo Jima Memorial. It was here that all the veterans gathered for a group picture before going to the Changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington, VA.

Arlington Cemetery is composed of more than 620 acres. This is the resting place for many military members, but it also represents all of those who didn’t come back from the war. The respectful silence and precision of the ceremony shows how the veterans still value their time in the service.

Some men would explore by themselves throughout the day, reflecting on their memories. Others were talkative and simply overjoyed that they were, at the very least, remembered.

They returned to Regan International Airport by 6:00 p.m. where they boarded the plane for Greensboro.

When they returned to Piedmont Triad International airport they were welcomed home once again and again returned to their quiet lives.

This was the last trip for the Triad Flight of Honor. For information on other Flight of Honor trips visit

View a slideshow of some of the photos from that day.

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Elon student produces his own mashups and electronic music

November 17, 2011

By Neima Abdulahi

Junior Nick Kuznacic is a music connoisseur who is taking part in a new music phenomenon known as mashups.

According to Kuznacic, mashups are made through the process of combining the lyrics, beats and background synthesizers from multiple songs to create a whole new song.

DJ Koozblah, as Kuznacic is known when he’s behind the disk jockey booth, spends hours on his computer crafting the perfect fusion.

“I’ll wake up and hear a song in the morning and then think of ways to remix throughout the day and different things I could do with it,” he said. “It’s a lot about trusting my instincts and how I am feeling.”

Kuznacic decided to invest in his passion for producing music when he purchased the Logic music editing software and a mixing board with turntables. He said that becoming a DJ has taught him an important lesson.

“It’s about paying attention to your audience and knowing what they want to hear and being able to give it to them,” he said.

However, Kuznacic doesn’t just stop at mashups. He also makes his own electronic dance music, which is much more complex to construct.

“It usually can take at least ten hours to finish one song,” Kuznacic said, “but I’ve spent months on a song before. Depending on your mood, things will sound differently.”

Kuznacic shares his produced tracks with his Elon audience by DJing at house parties and local venues, like West End Station.

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


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