Unique look into Indian culture
Mar06

Unique look into Indian culture

For those looking to experience a different way of life without the hassle and expense of international travel, Indian Culture Night brought another piece of the world to campus, making the gap between the East and West seem a little smaller. Dr. Nancy Bonner, assistant professor in the College of Business serves as the faculty adviser for the Indian Student Association, which hosted the event Friday evening. “It is for the students to share and teach about their culture,” she said, “just to celebrate.” Bonner said that even graduates who no longer live in Belton make their way back to the area to enjoy the festivities of the event because of what they get out of it. “They come from far to be able to do this,” she said. “They feel like they’re at home.” December graduate Narendar Vemula was one such guest. “I came from Houston to meet with all my friends,” he said. “There was lots of food and culture. It was really nice.” Walking into Shelton Theater, guests were immediately invited by the sounds, smells and sights of the country. Tables lined the walls with Indian food, filling the room with the scents of saffron and curry as Indians and Americans alike waited in line to fill their plates with the abundance of traditional dishes. Junior Christian studies major Aaron Massey attended the event and enjoyed sampling the cuisine with all of the different spices, but his favorite part of the evening was the entertainment. Performers in brightly colored garb sang, danced and played instruments on stage. From classical Indian tunes to more modern Bollywood numbers, the night offered something for everyone to enjoy. “You could tell they were having a lot of fun,” Massey said. “They were proud to see their culture represented.” Throughout his time at the university, Massey has developed a love for international students and enjoyed getting to see a piece of where they come from. “They see the world very differently than we do, and so it’s nice getting to experience their culture and their roots and what forms their identity,” he said. Massey thinks it is important for students to attend events like Indian Culture Night because it offers a unique opportunity to be exposed to ways of life different from what is seen in America. “Literally, the world is brought to us, instead of us having to go out into the world,” he said. “There’s exposure to different cultures, to different world views, to the different people, to the different way of seeing life and doing life.” Aside from an evening of fun, Bonner said the purpose of the...

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Issue of homeless in Central Texas grows
Feb21

Issue of homeless in Central Texas grows

On any given morning around 11 o’clock, a line wraps around an old building on Avenue G near downtown Temple. Unless you were seeking the place out, you’d probably never know it was there, much like those who walk through the doors each day. Inside, people are greeted with smiles before they sit down to a hot meal. For many of them, it’s the only one they’ll get all day. Fifty seven-year-old Caleb Rumfield is a regular visitor. As one of Temple’s homeless, he comes to the Salvation Army’s Feed My Sheep program almost every day. Clean-cut, well-spoken and friendly, he doesn’t stand out from anybody you’d meet in line at the grocery store. But like many today, Rumfield has fallen on rough times. After a stint in Oklahoma City helping his ill brother, Rumfield returned to his native Temple in 2005. “At that point I was pretty much homeless,” he said. “It’s been off and on since then.” Though Rumfield spends several hours every week at the library searching for jobs on the Internet, he has had little luck, and fears that his age is working against him. While it is only a few years before he will be able to draw Social Security, he is not content to stop looking for a way to earn a living for himself. “I’d rather be working,” Rumfield said. Unfortunately, Rumfield’s situation is more common than many realize. According to the annual homeless count, conducted  Jan. 26, there are 301 documented homeless in Bell County. The count takes place across the country each year and in every county in Texas. Sue Hamby was the coordinator for East Bell County this year and sees homelessness as a large issue in the area and beyond. “It’s a problem in our community, in our state and in our nation,” she said. Once the numbers are gathered from the count, they are sent to Austin so reports can be generated and sent to Washington, D.C., where they put funding back into the state. “I’m hoping we can get some of that money,” Hamby said. As a regular volunteer at the Salvation Army, she sees about 75 to 100 people a day who are currently without a place to live. Because of the state of the economy, Hamby said more individuals and families are finding themselves in the same situation. “A lot of people who were giving to Salvation Army last year are now using Salvation Army,” she said. “The general public doesn’t realize how many people are one paycheck away from being homeless.” Through her job at the United Way, UMHB alumna Mary Beth Kelton...

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What would you do if you awoke married to Tatum?

As it turns out, it takes more than Channing Tatum’s good looks to make a movie worth seeing. Unfortunately, for theaters full of eager women who undoubtedly dragged their boyfriends to see The Vow on Valentine’s weekend, that’s about all the film had to offer. Like most chick flicks of today, it was the classic tale of boy, played by Tatum, meets girl, played by Rachel McAdams. Boy inevitably falls in love with girl and the two get married. In an unexpected turn of events (for anyone fortunate enough to have not seen the trailer a dozen times), an accident leaves McAdams unable to remember her current life, including her husband. As Tatum attempts to reconnect with his wife, he realizes that in her mind she is no longer the person he married, but a former version of herself. While it is somewhat on the heartwarming side to see him pursue her despite this serious complication, the new (or old, if that’s how you want to look at it) McAdams turns out to be a pretty unlikable character, and it kind of leaves you wondering why the poor guy wants to stay with her at all. And then there’s the acting. Both Tatum and McAdams play virtually the same characters in The Vow as they do in all of their other films, which is fine, except that Tatum never quite hits the mark in any of them. Throughout the film, it becomes apparent that it isn’t as much a love story as it is about self-discovery. This is a nice idea and a refreshing diversion from the typical romance. However, it’s not exactly what audiences full of couples on Valentine’s dates are looking for. It’s not the mushy gushy, feel good kind of thing that makes you want to cuddle up next to the one you love. In fact, it is actually a little depressing. The whole thing seemed so set on reminding viewers not to take love for granted that it ended up being kind of scary. I mean, we all know anything can happen, but we don’t go to the movies to think about the possibility of our soulmates losing the memory of who we are. After a series of ups and downs (mostly the latter), the very last scene of the film  leaves viewers with a small glimmer of hope that perhaps love does prevail in the end. But after everything, it almost doesn’t feel like quite enough. It may have been the lack of chemistry between the actors or poor writing, but two minutes before the credits and a line of text telling me the...

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New stadium set for 2013
Feb07

New stadium set for 2013

A bright green football field painted on top of the parking lot gave a visual to those attending Friday’s groundbreaking ceremony of where the new Crusader football stadium and student union building will stand in just over a year’s time. Though a gray sky threatened rain, students, faculty, staff, trustees and alumni gathered at the event to celebrate the start of another project in the campus master plan. President Dr. Randy O’Rear expressed his excitement from the “50-yard-line.” “This is going to be a magnificent complex, and I cannot wait to watch as our new student union building and stadium rise up out of the heart of the campus,” he said. The $50 million structure is set to be completed by the summer of 2013 and will be composed of a three-story, 107,000-square-foot student union building attached to a stadium that will hold  up to 10,000 spectators. The two parts of the project were designed together in order to merge student life and athletics. “By itself, the new state-of-the-art student union building would transform the student life experience on campus,” O’Rear said. “However, its unique design in tandem with and overlooking the new home for Crusader football will redefine our campus community.” Some recognizable names in architecture and construction were employed for the task. “Only a special and talented team would have taken the vision we had for this project and put it into a tangible design,” O’Rear said. Earl Santee of Populous design firm is the lead architect. He has been involved in such projects as Minute Maid Park in Houston, Target Field in Minneapolis and Yankee Stadium in New York. The Turner construction company, which also worked on Yankee Stadium, will help implement the plans. The new SUB will include a dining hall, grill, sports hall with multiple TV screens, a coffee shop featuring Starbucks coffee, a Chick-Fil-A, bookstore, offices, a state-of-the-art band hall, a banquet hall and social gathering areas. Vice President for Student Life Dr. Byron Weathersbee thinks the structure for students to gather in will be beneficial to their educational experience at the university. “Our leadership values and gets the fact of how important the co-curricular is to the learning community,” he said. He looks forward to seeing how the facility will enhance student life. “A building like this is a unifying force that truly brings students together,” Weathersbee said. “It provides a forum for divergent viewpoints and creates an environment where everyone feels welcome.” Junior social work major Caitlin Hiett spoke for the student body at the ceremony. “This will be the center of our campus, literally and figuratively,” she said. “These new...

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Bells staff predicts 2012 Oscar winners
Feb07

Bells staff predicts 2012 Oscar winners

Awards season is definitely upon us, and in just a matter of weeks, the 84th Academy Awards will honor the greatest movies of the year. Stars will take the red carpet Feb. 26 to show off their designer duds and see who will take home the awards. With so many worthy movies and actors, it is sure to be a tight competition, but The Bells staff is weighing in with their picks for who deserves to take home this year’s golden statues. Though some big name films are in the running for best picture, one seems to stand out among fans. The Help portrays a young white journalist from Jackson, Miss. played by Emma Stone, who documents the stories of African American maids in the 1960s. The movie is adapted from a novel by Kathryn Stockett, and both have enjoyed success and popularity. Not only is the film full of humor and has a cast of talented actresses, but it also has cultural significance. It displays a important period of time in our nation’s history in a way that is both informative and entertaining. Among the other top contenders is the sports drama Moneyball starring Brad Pitt and the black and white picture The Artist. Also nominated are The Descendants, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close, Hugo, Midnight in Paris, The Tree of Life and War Horse. Talented stars were also in no shortage this year, and many of the nominees for best picture also produced best actor and actress noms. This being his fourth time as an Oscar nominee, Brad Pitt is likely to take home the prize as best actor in a leading roll for his work on Moneyball. He portrays the Oakland Athletic’s general manager Billy Bean as he tries to rebuild a losing team. The bad-boy persona he has established in previous roles really give weight to his unorthodox methods in resurrecting a secondrate baseball team. Pitt is a great actor and once again shows that on screen. Other nominees for the title are Demian Bichir in A Better Life, George Clooney in The Descendants, Jean Dujardin in The Artist and Gary Oldman in Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy. For the other most coveted award for best actress in a leading roll, The Bells votes are somewhat divided. A definite front runner is The Help’s Viola Davis, who portrays the first of the African American maids to agree to tell their heart gripping story. She did a wonderful job of playing her part and made every single scene believable as she grasped the audience and hung onto them with every emotion until the very end. No stranger...

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