Video of the Week Nov. 17 – Nov. 23

I think I enjoyed seeing the guy getting hit in the face with a water balloon way too...

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Blog: Movie extra
Nov18

Blog: Movie extra

By Laura Beth Gebhardt I absolutely love movies. One could even say that I am addicted to them, so you can imagine how excited I was to be given the opportunity to be in one, especially one that starred Claire Danes, David Strathairn, Catherine O’Hara and Julia Ormond. Yet, being an extra in a film is not for everyone. Most of the time a person will either love it or hate it. I personally loved the experience and would do it again in a heartbeat. This opportunity I had to be a part of the Temple Grandin project was not a normal one, because like most extra work, I wasn’t just seen as a blurb in the background. I was, instead, working on set for four days, and had many scenes where I was right in front of the camera. Being on a legit movie set was unlike anything else I have experienced. It was absolutely amazing to see how much detail and work went into getting a simple scene done. For example, on the first day, we were shooting a scene where all we were doing was playing outside in front of the school. It couldn’t have been more than a 40-second shot, and it took us almost four hours. This is one of the reasons some people are not so fond of extra work. A phrase that describes it well is, “hurry up and wait.” The first hour you get there everyone is in a hurry to get your make up and wardrobe done, and then rush you off to set. Yet, when you get to the set, you wait and wait some more. One day we actually waited 10 hours before we started filming our first scene. But as frustrating as this sitting around was, it ended up bonding everyone who went. Since most everyone who was involved was from UMHB, we all already knew each other, but being stuck in a log cabin together for 10 hours brought us a lot closer. In spite of the long waits and sleep deprivation, the experience was so rewarding. In the film business, it sometimes comes down to whom you know. Being a performance studies major and wanting to someday be involved with movies, networking is extremely important. I believe I got a good start by being a part of this film. The director talked with me one on one several times, and the assistant director knew me by name and always made a point to say hi to me. What a great...

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Student loans bring concern to campus as U.S. crisis continues making an impact on future plans

By Terrance McGee As Congress scrambles to stop the flow of red ink from America’s financial institutions, the economy continues to suffer, and students, parents and financial aid officers keep a close eye on the student loan industry. The recession, largely attributed to an unprecedented number of sub-prime loans, has made money tight at banks and lending institutions across the country. As a result, standards to approve loans have become stricter as interest rates applied to those approved loans have seen major increases. Kay Pearson, the loan administrator for financial aid, said there have been many changes in the student loan industry and market within the last several years. One good thing happened as far as the interest rate is concerned for subsidized Stafford loan. Previously, a fixed rate of 6.8% was applied to loans disbursed July 1, 2006 – June 30, 2008; however, since July 1, 2008, the interest rate for subsidized Stafford loan has decreased to 6%. The interest rate for all subsidized Stafford loans will continue to decrease gradually over the next four years. By July 1, 2011, subsidized Stafford loans will have a fixed interest rate of 3.4%. “This is good news for the class that came in as freshmen this year,” Pearson said. “While you are in school, within your grace period and during your repayment, your interest rate will be a little bit lower than what it was.” One thing that causes concern for most students is the availability of funds for loans. “Even though we have fewer lenders on our list now than in the past, the funds are still there,” Pearson said. “Because we are a private school, our students have a good repayment history, and our school as a whole has a good default rate. Our students should not have to worry about being able to obtain a Stafford loan.” With that said, there have been some problems if the student tries to borrow an alternative or private loan. On a regular Stafford student loan, there is no credit check done on the student. “Any student can get a Stafford loan, but when it comes to the private loans, a credit check is performed on the student’s credit history,” Pearson said. Most students are not yet credit worthy, meaning they have not had enough credit history to obtain a loan in their own name, she said. In that case, they need a co-signer. Due to the financial plunge, most lenders have increased their credit score requirements. This can make it difficult for students to obtain a co-signer, and can also make it difficult for parents who are attempting to obtain...

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Campus students cheer at eighth-grade Tigers game to show support

By Patrick McDonald The quarterback throws the ball, and it lands in the wide receiver’s hot little hands. He runs the ball into the endzone for a touchdown, and as he spikes the pigskin into the ground, you would expect the crowd to go wild. This is not the case for the eighth grade Belton Tigers team, as they have few spectators attending their games. But some students from UMHB decided to make a change for them. They saw the need for encouragement for the young NFL players-to-be and thought of a solution. They would cheer for the Belton Tigers at their game. Junior Lydia Schmidt said, “We got the idea from a similar event that happened in Austin. A small team, like the Tigers, needed help and attention. So some people in the community asked ESPN broadcasters to follow the game and hired the Goodyear blimp to fly overhead. We just wanted to love them.” And love them they did. They came dressed in red T-shirts and carrying paint and noisemakers. Though not many students were able to make it to the game, those who did show made a difference. While the sun shone brightly and increased the temperature of the day, they stuck around the entire time, yelling for the Tigers with sweat pouring down their faces. “It was a great experience to make these kids’ day. Some of the students were really energetic, and they had to be since there were only about ten people from UMHB,” sophomore Mike Kroll said. The students did a great job, cheering that would have rivaled the greatest fans. They were loud and received some weird looks from the parents of players and young cheerleaders on the blacktop. The Tigers would end up winning the game with a shut-out against Midway, 12-0. Coach Josh Davis said, “What the students did for the players was very much appreciated. Apart from parents coming to see their son play or their daughter cheer, there are not many people that do come to see these kids. They were surprised to have people being loud for them and even asked me a couple times who it was cheering for them.” Junior Alanna McFarland said, “It was all worth it. The time was well spent not only with friends from the university, but with kids we did not even know. Everyone should come along when the next game comes around. They may have to pay $2 to get in, but there is nothing else that they would be...

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Where the West visited the East
Nov18

Where the West visited the East

When Tommy Wilson said he was ready to jump out of a plane with a Bible and a shovel to help earthquake victims in China, he was only half joking. “They ran out of parachutes,” he said. The junior Christian ministry and business major may not have gone skydiving during his stay in Hong Kong, but he believes he served God in a big way. “That’s something every Christian can do without a seminary degree,” Wilson said. He packed up after his sophomore year at UMHB and moved to Hong Kong, China, for a year of missions. “I felt God calling me there,” he said. “The opportunity was there, and I felt I could meet the needs of the people.” Wilson’s main focus was youth ministry, which he had done before in the United States. He organized weekly youth services on Fridays and also led mission trips to India, mainland China and a summer camp shortly before he returned home. He happened to see filming for the summer blockbuster movie The Dark Knight, in which Batman jumps from Hong Kong’s International Finance Center Tower, but Wilson kept focused. “We did a broad range of things, and all of them had youth involvement,” Wilson said. Senior recreation major John Mark Harvey visited Wilson in Hong Kong and watched his ministry in action. “Tommy really adapted well to a culture and language different from anything in Texas,” Harvey said. “He had such a servant’s heart; it was incredible. Tommy was all about serving people.” Wilson went to India twice, to a city near the Pakistani border, where he worked with a local pastor to help newly-formed churches in slum areas, churches that were ministering to the needs of the most vulnerable in Indian society. “We went to a school that a church started where they brought in young girls and taught them how to sew, read and write,” Wilson said. “When they left, they would have a skill to support themselves so they wouldn’t be forced into prostitution or slavery.” What impacted Wilson the most, however, was the massive earthquake that struck Sichuan province in China on May 12, killing nearly 70,000 people. He was able to travel to the affected areas two months later. “The amount of destruction was phenomenal,” he said. “Home after home was just demolished. Some entire cities only had two buildings left standing, and even those were so heavily damaged they had to be demolished. There were reports of villages near mountain ranges where the mountains just crumbled down on them; entire villages of 10,000-20,000 people buried under 60 feet of rock.” Wilson welcomed the opportunity...

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Picturesque Pageant: Through the technical hiccups, blinding spotlights and treacherous staircases, contestants demonstrate poise and grace
Nov18

Picturesque Pageant: Through the technical hiccups, blinding spotlights and treacherous staircases, contestants demonstrate poise and grace

The set was reminiscent of a Broadway production as many beautiful and talented women on campus competed for the coveted honor of Miss Mary Hardin-Baylor. For this year’s theme, “Bright Lights, Big City,” the Chapel was decorated with many colorful lights and small cutouts of familiar skylines. Large spotlights lit up the night sky. The 2009 pageant was sponsored by the Campus Activities Board and was a student-led production in which young women on campus represented organizations, classes or resident halls in competition. Alumni judges were asked to rate the contestants based on their interview, evening gown and individual talent performance. “I’m really proud of all of the girls. They did a great job,” Mike McCarthy, director of campus activities, said. “You fall in love with all of the girls, and although it sounds cliché, when the night gets here, you want them all to win. The biggest reward for me is just to see them all do what they do well. Everyone did a great job.” Senior art education major Allison Daniel was this year’s pageant director. “I think (pageant) exceeded every expectation,” she said. “It was really cool after all was said and done, and after all our work, to just sit and watch each of these girls shine.” Daniel said the most common question she was asked during the pageant was who she thought would win. “Honestly, out of the girls we have, I could not pick one,” she said. “Every time I would think that one of the girls was pulling ahead of the rest, all of the other girls would step up and do just as well. I would’ve been pleased with any of these girls as Miss MHB.” This year’s winner, sophomore vocal performance major Brianna Edwards, said she had no idea that she would receive this honor. The McLane Hall representative said her original goals were to meet a lot of new people, make a lot of new friends and hopefully get to learn something in the process. “Now I’m standing on the stage with a heavy crown on my head,” she said. “It’s kind of surreal. I feel like the best description of this moment would be the scene in Talladega Nights when Will Ferrell wins the race and doesn’t know what to do with his hands. It’s kind of like that.” Edwards’ platform was “Empowering Students to Achieve Boldness.” “I want to talk to Shawn Shannon at the Baptist Student Ministry and set up actual courses to teach students boldness before they are sent out on the mission field,” she said. “So many times, students get caught up in this...

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