Thursday, November 18, 2010

Mystery cone at Flagler College: The plot thickens

Mysteriously a traffic cone has made its way to the top of the Flagler College Ponce Dome.

Ashley Anderson, a tour guide at the college, said that a member of her tour pointed out the traffic cone about a week and a half ago. Anderson said that nobody aside from that tour member has noticed the cone.

Associate Dean of Academic Affairs Yvan Kelly said he has no idea how the cone made its way up there. “My guess is someone climbed up there and put it there last week,” said Kelly. He acknowledges that work has been done on the third floor of Ponce, specifically on the dome, but doesn’t believe that an on-site worker is responsible.

Matt Angelo, a senior help desk technician at Flagler, said he spotted the cone two weeks ago after noticing students pointing up at it. Angelo said that the cone was sitting higher up on the rod on the dome. Since then, it has settled onto the top of the dome.

Students and school officials said they didn't believe that anyone has made an effort to remove the cone.

Student Carolyn Kienzle, 21, said she doesn’t want to see the cone taken down. “Some dumb kid probably placed it up there like they did two years ago with the flags on the smokestack,” said Kienzle. In the past two flags were placed on the smokestack above the Molly Wiley Art Building.

Kelly said Dan Stewart, dean of student services, is responsible for the disciplinary actions should the perpetrator be caught. “It is a safety issue and a harsher punishment could be issued if there was any damage to the building,” said Kelly.
Story by Tiffany Langello, Michael Isam and Nick Cardoso

Heightened concern over body scans before busy travel holiday

With the busiest air travel day of the year approaching, there is much talk about the 385 full-body scanners installed in 68 U.S. airports. The Transportation Security Administration hopes to install approximately 500 additional units by the end of the year.

People traveling by airplanes are going to have to make a decision between going through the body scanner, undergoing a manual pat down or agreeing to an $11,000 civil fine.

Experts warn that full body scanners could increase your risk of cancer. The radiation used in the machines could be underestimated and harmful to children. The scanner is supposed to only affect the skin and not reach the internal organs. The radiation used in the machines could be twenty times higher than originally predicted.

"I haven’t really thought about it much. In today's world it’s the price we pay, so I guess its not really invasion of privacy if its going to keep us safe," said Julio Laracuente, 22, an employee at a psychiatric hospital in New Hampshire.

National Opt-Out Day is taking place on Nov. 24, 2010. According to the National Opt-Out Day website, on this day you have the right to opt-out of the naked body scanner machines. All you have to do is say "I opt out" when they tell you to go through one of the machines. You will then be given an "enhanced" pat down. This is a right given to you by the TSA. Nov. 24 is the busiest travel day of the year, and will be used to show citizen's disagreement with the new body scanners.

The idea of a full-body scan has some people feeling uncomfortable. “At first I didn’t think anything of it, but after seeing the images the other day, it looks a little intense,” said Matt Stone, a 39-year-old account executive in North Attleboro, Mass.

When asked what he thought about full body scanners college student Brandon Crockett, 22, replied, “We should adopt the Israeli way of airport security and search people by the way they look, they have been doing it that way for over 50 years, if someone looks like a terrorist then they should be searched. There is no need for full body scans on elderly women and children; it is an unnecessary dose of radiation and a waste of time." Crockett hopes that the government will not allow strip searches to occur at the airports, and thinks if they do people will most likely begin to boycott airports.

What if you could walk through that airport body scanner, pause for the camera, and know that your naked image would never be pored over by human eyes? If it was software, not TSA screeners, who searched you and other passengers for possible explosives?

That's the vision of Transportation Security Administration head John Pistole. At a Senate hearing Wednesday, Georgia Republican Johnny Isakson conjured this future and suggested to Pisole, "It looks like technology can be a solution to the privacy issue." Pistole responded, "I think so, I'm very hopeful in that regard."

By Shea Hardiman, Elin Karlsson, Cassandra Kapelson, Amanda Newberg and Lindy Almony

Energy drink fans react to news of possible FDA ban

Flagler College sophomore Matthew Sperber remembers the harm he experienced from drinking Four Loko, a caffeinated malt alcoholic beverage.

“The first night of spring semester [in 2009], I drank three or four,” he said. “I ended up falling and cracking my head open—I had to have stitches put in.”

The 23.5-ounce drink has come under scrutiny recently for its alleged dangerous side effects.

The Food and Drug Administration Wednesday warned four companies that manufacture caffeinated malt alcoholic beverages that such products are unsafe and that the FDA may take action to ban the purchase of these drinks.

“Experts have raised concerns that caffeine can mask some of the sensory cues individuals might normally rely on to determine their level of intoxication,” the FDA stated.

Phusion Products - the company that sells the popular drink Four Loko - announced in a Nov. 16 release that it would reformulate its products to remove caffeine.

“By taking this action today, we are again demonstrating leadership, cooperation and responsible corporate citizenship,” said one of the founders of Phusion Products, Chris Hunter, in the release.

The other three companies mentioned in the FDA release are Charge Beverages, New Century Brewing and United Brands Company.

Some students say the ban is unnecessary. Justin Aprea, a 21-year-old University of North Florida student, fears that such a ban will set a bad precedent.

“It’s another step towards the governments over-involvement in the personal life of American citizens,” he said. “Land of the free or land of the regulated?”

Flagler sophomore Lauren DeGeorge agrees.

“I wouldn’t ban them because it’s someone’s choice whether they want to drink it or not,” she said.

Still, Sperber sees the positive side to a ban.

“Most people will acknowledge that it's not good for you, but college students have this immortality complex,” he said. “They think—hey, this can’t kill me. This will keep going until they ban it."

Story by Emily Hoover, Katie Taylor, Kelly Gibbs, Alex Bonus, Kamayla Hooten, Brittany Swan and Lauren Ely

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Prank at Flagler College

 Notice anything unusual in this photo, taken at Flagler College?
 Look carefully...
 Nothing unusual here...
 But this is an unusual sight. Someone topped this structure with a traffic cone.
It's a real whodunit.

Monday, November 15, 2010

How to balance social life and GPA - IV

Here is a fourth response to the question - How to get good grades and still have a fun social life:

- Set goals for yourself
- Do your Home work during breaks, lunch, and free time before the night time and weekends
- Set yourself a schedule
- Attend class before an exam
- Maintain a good relationship with you professor
- Stay positive
- Eat healthy
- Try not to take anything too serious
- Stay Organized
- Don’t get involved in a serious relationship

By Victoria Choeff

part 1
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How to balance social life and GPA - III

Here's a third response to the question - how to maintain a high GPA without sacrificing your social life:

Parties, drinking, social life; to college students, these aspects of life are crucial to their well being on a social level throughout the campus. One major aspect of college seems to stand in the way of all of these activities. This aspect is called the ,"GPA" or "Grade Point Average". Obtaining an above average to excellent GPA is crucial for college students for it represents their individual try in their academic career. To have an excellent GPA and also maintain a beneficial social life is a sticky task, but, I feel as though I have a perfect solution. I hope these helpful hints come in handy to every college student alike.

1. Always get homework done, FIRST!
2. Never say out late if you have an early class.
3. Prepare a meal before an early class to obtain beneficial retention.
4. Give yourself time to study in-between or after classes for every subject.
5. Test on Friday! No sweat, give yourself at least two weeks to study a little bit every day.
6. Before drinking, question if getting wasted will affect your sleep resolving in a skipped class.
7. If you decide to drink on a particular night and have an early class in the morning, drink water with every drink to settle your stomach for easy sleep.
8. For every drink you consume in one night, allow yourself one hour of studying prior going out.
9. Attend class, yeah it's hard sometimes, but it's totally worth the hour or so.
10. If you accidentally miss a class, follow an email to your professor or fellow classmate regarding anything you have missed.

With these helpful hints, I hope college students will learn how to better organize a successful social and academic experience.

By Michael O'Hara

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How to balance social life and GPA - II

Here's how another group of students responded to the question:

Having an active social life without ruining your G.P.A could be difficult if you are not self disciplined. It is easy to get caught up in parties and drinking once you are away from home and free to do as you please. We girls have come with ten steps to follow by in order to still have fun without flunking out of college.

1. Finish your homework before you go out.
2. Plan your social life around your academic life.
3. Consider your schooling a 9-5 job than party afterward.
4. Mix homework with social activities ex. study groups.
5. Do not procrastinate your homework.
6. No your limits for drinking. Don’t binge drink.
7. Don’t go out every single night.
8. Get enough sleep.
9. Use your planner to stay organized.
10. Manage your Facebook time.

By Breanna Berry, Annaeleise, Jaime, Johanna, Brittany Wheeler, Erin, Emma, Alex, Lauren, Bianca, Kelsey, Nadine, Sarah, Britany, Carey, Adair, Lianne, Kelsey, Katy, Alex Carlo

part 1
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How to balance social life and GPA - I

I asked Flagler College students for tips on how to maintain a high GPA without sacrificing their social life. Here's one of four responses I got from the students. See links for the other three responses.

Top 10 ways to balance a social life and school life
1. Don’t drink during the week
2. Get your work done during the week, so your weekend is free to socialize
3. Don’t leave your work till the last minute
4. Have a limit on how much you drink
5. If you do go out during the week, have a certain time that you will stop drinking and go home
6. If you have big projects, split it up
7. Know what classes you have to work harder in
8. Don’t go to class drunk or high
9. Don’t miss class
10. Realize that school is not free, and you are not here to party

By Andrew Kayworth, Ray Murphy, Eric Rojas, George Schoenwaelder

part 1
part 2
part 3
part 4