Campus houses to be torn down
Sep20

Campus houses to be torn down

Soon the university will build a new nursing building, football stadium, performance hall and other structures. However, the price to pay to get the new facilities will be tearing other buildings and housing down, specifically the Huckins area and houses on Wells Street.  What came as a surprise to students living in these houses is that they will be required to move out during Christmas break. Previously they had been told they would move out during the summer like everyone else. Junior exercise and sport science major Rudy Nerio, who lives in the blue house near Huckins, was concerned about the new campus building development and how it affects him. “We first found out about the house situation at our annual first housing meeting. They pulled us aside and other houses to break the news to us. My initial reaction was I have no clue where I’m going to live now. This made me extremely worried.”  Jeremy Sapp, Ethan Noel and Bailey Ross live at the 715 house on Wells Street. At the housing meeting, they were also told they would have to leave early and could not believe this was the only option. Junior exercise and sport science major Noel said, “I was pretty mad at first, but once they explained the situation I was just bewildered.” Dean of Students Ray Martin said, “We had to move folks out because we were given a deadline … by the Belton City Council. If we don’t knock out those houses by January or February, we won’t be able to accomplish our goal of expanding the campus. We’re trying to help make room for more parking spaces, the nursing building, performance arts building, etc.”   Junior sport management major Bailey Ross said, “They explained that our options were either getting into the new apartments, but there wasn’t a guarantee we would all be roommates again. However, they promised we would be placed at the top of the housing list and first priority.” So why this sudden change in action?  Under a Belton city rule, property owners are allowed to demolish their homes under certain conditions such as deterioration and/or economic hardship. Therefore, the city council decided to implement a temporary eight-month moratorium on the Historic Preservation Ordinance. But they sped it up to making it by January. Junior math major Jeremy Sapp said, “I understand why they’re doing it. I just wish we would’ve known sooner. I’m going to miss this house; it has a lot of good memories. But it’s old; I think it was made in the 1970s, so it’s not in the best shape.”  Nerio  hopes that the university...

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Team strives to improve season
Sep20

Team strives to improve season

Currently, the women’s soccer team has a record of 1-3-1 after a tough game against Austin College, which ended up in a loss, a score of 1-0.  However, the 31 players, along with  Coach Meg Brown are not slowing down since they are striving to win the American Southwest Conference. Senior nursing major Erica Harris is hoping that more practice will produce improvement. “Our first three games of the season were tough. Two went to double overtime, and we definitely learned a lot about each other and ourselves as a team from those games,” she said.  Team members know they still need to work on a few things for the rest of the season. “There’s always room for improvement, but I think the best way for any one of us to improve is to practice like we would play in a game. If we don’t practice hard, we aren’t going to play hard come game time.” A change to the team this year is the number of new players; at least eight freshmen have joined along with some transfers. Harris said, “With so many newcomers, we are still getting to know each other’s tendencies on the field.”    Junior exercise and sport science major Tori Seiler is impressed with the chemistry already. “We work really well as a team this season, and I believe some of that has to do with our chemistry off of the field. Last season we didn’t have very good chemistry, so as returners we decided to really focus on that this season,” she said. The team has been practicing hard since before school started by doing three-a-days. Now they practice two hours a day, Monday through Thursday. Games are usually Fridays and Saturdays.  Players do a variety of activities during practice to improve their skills for upcoming games. Freshman undeclared major Ashley Teague said, “We range from conditioning to scrimmaging to watching film from our past games.” The women are also learning to focus on leaving their problems, anxiety and stress off the field.  Seiler said, “One thing we are working towards as a team is bringing urgency and more drive into practice. It seems sometimes we can let the pressure of school and having a bad day affect our practice, so we are working hard to leave everything off the field and come into practice with high intensity and pressure.”  Brown is always helping the women with whatever they need and giving them positive criticism and feedback for their improvement.  Teague said, “Our coach is not only a good coach on the field, but also a good friend off the field. I am only...

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The Lion King back in 3-D

One of the most beloved movie classics of all time was re-released Friday in select theaters – Walt Disney’s The Lion King.  For those unfamiliar with the plot, The Lion King is about a young ambitious lion, Simba, whose father Mufasa, the king, is killed by jealous uncle Scar. Simba, thinking it is his fault, flees Pride Rock and meets some colorful   characters. As Simba grows older and after years of exile, he is persuaded to return home to overthrow Scar and claim the kingdom as his own, thus completing the “Circle of Life.” This time the film is enhanced with 3-D effects to attract not just the older generation, but also the new one that has never experienced The Lion King in theaters before. Some who were just children 17 years ago have the chance to make this the first Disney film their kids see in a theater. Millions of devoted fans are thrilled that the movie is being re-released. Junior sport management major Alexandra Taylor said, “I was 4 years old when The Lion King came out, and I thought it was the greatest thing I’d ever seen. I wanted to go back every day and watch it. To this day, it is still my favorite movie.  Watching it reminds me of my                    childhood, and I know when I see it again, I will feel like a kid once more.”  Junior math major Melissa Donham said, “I loved The Lion King when I first saw it. Excluding all the princess movies, it’s definitely one of the best Disney movies. All the songs are great. When I first saw the preview in                 theaters, I got really excited.” There are mixed feelings about the changes to The Lion King, however.  Junior psychology major Audrey Hale said, “It seems like everything is in 3-D now. Making The Lion King in 3-D makes me sad. It’s as if a little bit of my childhood is being taken away. I’m sure little kids will love it, but we know the old version. It’s more sentimental.” This re-release of The Lion King sparks a possible new trend. Will more classic, traditionally hand-drawn animated movies become 3-D? There has been discussion within the Disney Company that, if Lion King does well, Snow White and the Seven Dwarves and Alice in Wonderland will be the next ones to be digitalized.   Donham says that re-releasing cartoons is a great idea. “It’s really smart on their part. People like me, absolutely love Disney movies, so they’ll make a lot of money doing it. “  Hale said, “We’ll certainly go with a big group so we can all...

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Freshman Elections

The future of the Student Governement Association lies in the hands of six incoming freshmen. Why?  There are six freshman  seats in SGA waiting to be filled — president, vice president, secretary, treasurer, senator and chaplain. The current members encourage the elections so freshmen will get involved. During Welcome Week, members even did a crazy dance  to promote the organization.  Junior social work major and vice president of SGA, Caitlin Heitt, said, “At the big fair during Welcome Week, we set up a table for any freshmen interested in being part of SGA. From there we had an interest meeting and then freshmen meeting. During the freshmen meeting, they tell their class what position they are running for and a little bit  more about their platform. Once their name is out there, the student can start their campaigning.”    When that happens students can use different methods to gain attention. Heitt said, “It is also a great way to meet people. When I ran for vice president as a freshman, I got the unique opportunity to step out of my comfort zone and introduce myself to random strangers to meet as many people as I could so I would have more supporters.”  Senior international business major and president Kassidy Harris said there are specific things he wants in future members. “We are looking for people who are excited about what is happening with UMHB and have a positive attitude about the future we have here—people who are wanting to serve the other students and want to build relationships.”  Being a part of SGA is beneficial to both the school and freshman members. Heitt said, “The freshmen will get a lot of experience with working with students and faculty. This is one thing that makes SGA special. We are the middle man for students and faculty. They will begin to realize how important meetings and agendas and organization are when they are trying to make a difference concerning both the students and faculty on this campus.” Director of Student Organizations Kristy Brischke said voting will hopefully take place online. “Voters will get an email, click on the link, and vote.It’s important for everyone to be involved, let their voice be heard, and pick who will represent their class.” Heitt and the rest of  the SGA members are thrilled about the fall semester. “This is a relatively new senate, which we see as a great thing,” Heitt said. “New senate means new ideas to bring to the table. This will be a time of transition, and we cannot wait to see what God has in store for SGA and UMHB as...

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Student finds help in service dog
Sep13

Student finds help in service dog

A typical classroom has teachers, students and … dogs?  If you have anatomy or speech with Kimberly Pearson, a physical therapy major, you’ll notice her faithful dog Jack lying beside her. But you’ll also discover Jack is no ordinary dog, and Kimberly is no ordinary student.  Pearson is a mother of four children, as well as a staff sergeant in the military. Her husband is a drill sergeant in the Army. Pearson has grown up in a military environment most of her life. Her parents were in the Air Force, and when Pearson herself became a young mom, she decided to join the military to provide benefits for her children. Pearson received basic training at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., where it was, “cold basically,” Pearson said. “We had on black rubber boots, and all of us fell down the icy hill training. It was pretty tough. But we had the chance to be hands on with the weapons and get fit.” Her second step was  Advanced Individual Training at Fort Sam Houston, Texas, where she earned a combat medic’s badge. After the long and tough training, Pearson was sent to Iraq in mid-2004. She was assigned to treat wounded soldiers and attached to different units wherever she was needed. However, an event that some speculated was an explosion would soon change Pearson’s life “I remember flashbacks of various things, but I don’t know exactly what happened,” she said. The incident had caused the bones in Pearson’s feet to become severely damaged and broken. But since there was no medical clinic, x-ray machines, or open wounds, she was given orthotics and pain medicine and kept on going. She was soon sent home in March 2005.   “I went back to Iraq in 2007,”  Pearson said. “I wasn’t scared but I changed my job. I felt too close and personal to the situation. I didn’t like the feeling of having someone’s life in my hands. My new job required me to work in an office, human resources, which was less dangerous. It was a totally different experience and took some time getting used to though. I was so used to being out in the field with my medical bags and having people tell me to ‘Get down!’” After her second combat tour, Pearson need 3 constructive ankle and foot surgeries because she was still in extreme pain and discovered that her bones had not healed properly. The cane she used to walk also put pressure on her knees and further amplified her pain. “After my third surgery, I knew I wanted a dog,” says Pearson. “Not necessarily a service dog, just a...

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