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  • 2015 Multicultural Scholars Counselors
    Aug 12 2015

    MSA Gears up for New Symposium

    Chris Hart-Williams

    The office of Multicultural Student Affairs’, MSA offices of Native American, African American and Hispanic/Latino Student Affairs unite on Wednesday for the first combined Symposium, the 2015 Symposium for Multicultural Scholars.
    Since 2010, the summer educational and transitional experience for incoming first-year students has been offered separately through each of MSA’s offices.
    The first Symposium was held in the summer of 1983 to enhance the experiences of African-American students at NC State and to address concerns about retention and successful advancement.
    In conjunction with the creation of the Native American Student Affairs came the Native American Symposium in August 2001. The Hispanic/Latino Symposium was funded in August 2010 along with several other initiatives through a $50,000 Semillas Grant awarded by Excellencia in Education. Both Symposiums mimicked the purpose of the African-American Symposium, according to the respective cultural/historical experience.
    Its purpose is to create a sense of community for first-year students and maximize their academic success a undergraduates while encouraging multiculturalism.
    Each of the Symposiums offered first-year students supportive sessions relating to identity and cultural experiences.
    Interim director of MSA, Jennifer Brown, welcomes the new combined Symposium model, she said the change offers incoming students the same experience as before.
    “What we are doing is we are reuniting and bringing our three communities together for Symposium,” Brown said.
    Many of the cultural pieces incorporated within the separate Symposiums will be present in the new one.
    “We are creating an opportunity for students to be able to share who they are, but also have an opportunity to connect with other students outside of the community that they identify with,” said Brown.
    The academic programming that was specific to each of the three Symposiums individually will now be combined into a single Symposium this summer.
    Symposium’s interactive student sessions and activities include “Academic Success 101, “Navigating Your Way”, “Who Am I?”, “Orgullo Latino”, “GaDuGi” and the MSA Cultural Showcase.
    “Those students that participate in Symposium year after year statistically show and prove to be higher GPAs than those who do not,” said Assistant Director of Hispanic Student Affairs Nelson Santiago.
    On average, students who attended Symposiums last year tended to have higher GPA’s than those who did not attend, according to MSA’s annual analysis of academic performance.
    African American students who attended had an average cumulative GPA of 2.96, and 2.92 for non-attendees. Hispanic and Latino students who attended Symposium averaged a GPA of 3.279 and those who didn’t had an average of 3.132.The cumulative average GPA for Native American who attended last year was 2.69 for attendees and 2.59 for non-Symposium attendees.
    Based on feedback from previous attendees, some changes have been made to make this year’s sessions are more valuable to students.
    “One of the biggest pieces that we’ve changed is giving students more time for them to interact with their Symposium Counselors,” said Jasmine Omorogbe Assistant Director of African American Student Affairs. “A lot of times students said ‘they were so cool but we didn’t really get to meet them that much,’ so we are trying to build in a lot of team building time and time for them to really get to know and build strong relationships.”
    Omorogbe said that by engaging and participating participants can expect to develop strong peer networks and mentor networks while at Symposium.

    Words from 2015 Multicultural Symposium Counselors

    “I look forward to making a connection with students personally because people encounter a number of students but if I touched one student that will make my heart smile at the end of the day,” said Symposium Counselor Gift Coker a senior majoring in bioprocessing science. “Knowing that I can go outside of Symposium and still see that student, know them by name and ask them how they’re doing and they be able to comfortable with me and know that we had made that connection, that’s what I look forward to is just connecting with at least a couple of students on a more personal level than just the couple of days of Symposium.”
    Ryan Barnes a senior majoring in paper science engineering who attended Symposium as a freshman said he learned a lot about himself and his peers.
    “I think it’s really a great opportunity because it prepares you. It built a sense of community within myself I didn’t previously have coming from high school, and the friends I met there are people I’m friends with today,” said Barnes.
    Megan Codallo a junior majoring in agricultural science said developing relationships with attendees at her Symposium freshman year helped her make connections with other students she’s met throughout her time at NC State and academically.
    “It really helped me academically succeed because of all of the tips they give you on how to do better in classes and how to take notes and stuff,” said Codallo.
    “I look forward to changing someone’s perspective,” said Symposium Counselor Jakini Kauba, a junior majoring in biological sciences. “A lot of students that come in are surprised by how many scholars are in the room that look like them and I can relate to that my first year. If I can help change someone’s perspective in that way then I think that’s a really good way to make an impact.”
    “I think that my Symposium experience mirrored a lot of students, I wasn’t really excited about being at NC State or really about Symposium and then when I got there I learned about so many resources that the campus had to offer me and other things, it made me excited about being a student at NC State,” said Symposium Counselor Stephanie Tate, a sophomore majoring in political science. “When I came in I knew I was going to be that student that was in their room all the time, not involved in anything, just here to get my degree. When I got to see other student leaders that were involved and still doing well in their classes it made me excited to be a student here.”
    “My symposium freshman year was really awesome because it was the first time that I met other people who identified like me. I’ve always had sort of an identity debate if I’m more American or more Colombian. It was the first time I was able to have that conversation in an open safe space,” said Jessica Gallo, a junior majoring in social work and Spanish.
    “I hope that with Symposium the students get a chance to connect with other people who are like them culturally but come from different experiences and also get a chance to meet some of the student leaders on campus and see that there’s a community already established here for them and they’re welcome with open arms and that we’re doing the work we’ll eventually depend on them to do in the future,” said Jasmine Cannon a senior majoring in womens and gender studies.

  • playlist
    Aug 12 2015

    Playlist for the Walk to Class

    Alfred Anderson
    Staff Writer

    On August 19th, you and thousands of your peers will parade around the brick-paved labyrinth known as North Carolina State University. In between trips to the bookstore, the library and class, you’ll find that many students choose to listen to music for both entertainment and motivation. Furthermore, being a campus DJ, I’m always listening music, whether it’s just for fun or in preparation for my next big gig. So, with that being said, here are several songs that you should add to your playlists, guaranteed to help you survive long and sometimes agonizing walks to class.

    Future – Commas
    It’s hard to name an artist that has been hotter than Future over the past year. With the release of three consecutive mixtapes (Monster, Beast Mode and 56 Nights) as well as his third studio album Dirty Sprite 2, Future has continued to rack in hit after hit with tracks such as “March Madness”, “Trap N*ggas” and “Commas”. I chose Commas as an appropriate song for this playlist because not only is it the most commercially successful of the three, but it is also a club anthem tailored to those ready to blow their latest check. It is perfect for college students preparing for graduation, as they explore the crowded job market.

    Kevin Gates – I Don’t Get Tired
    Although still considered an “underground artist” by some, Kevin Gates has consistently pieced together solid bodies of work over the past few years and his singles are no different. His hit single “I Don’t Get Tired” was released in late 2014 and became his most successful record to date and revolves around one of his most popular phrases: “I Don’t Get Tired.” This record is a great tool for students that find themselves on the seventh floor of DH Hill every night, completing assignments and studying for exams.

    Future Feat. Drake – Where Ya At
    Circling back to Future, this song is one of the many highlights from Dirty Sprite 2 and features the self-proclaimed “6 God” himself, Drake. It is the only feature on the album and does not disappoint. Future and Drake sound right at home on this energetic track aimed at calling out those that were nowhere to be found during hardship and struggle. All college students can relate, seeing as college is a never ending challenge that exposes you to who is truly there for you and who is not.

    Drake – Charged Up
    At the end of July, Meek Mill “shook the world” when he took at aim at Drake via Twitter. He accused Drake of “not writing his own raps” and having a ghost writer named Quentin Miller. In the following days, alleged reference tracks would leak, seemingly revealing that Meek’s accusations were indeed valid and turning all eyes to Drake. In the past, Drake has not been quick to respond to any accusations, but this time he decided to address the situation and releasing a response track titled “Charged Up”. The track takes shots at Meek and anyone that dares to question his penmanship. It is a mellow, yet effective track that can act as motivation to students when it seems like the world is against you.

    Drake – Back to Back
    Four days after Drake released “Charged Up” he released a second response track titled: “Back to Back”. This track sped up the tempo a little bit and showcased a more abrasive side of Drake, which really helped to turn the attention to Meek, who had yet to respond to Drake’s first diss track. This song is useful for walks to class because once you get past the fact that it is technically a diss track, it is a classic Drake song that consists of Drake talking tough (whether he can back it up or not) over stellar production and dropping one-liners that are sure to dominate pop culture for months to come. This makes for a high energy, celebratory track that will make you feel unstoppable, no matter what challenges you may face in the classroom and beyond.

    Kendrick Lamar – Alright
    One of my favorite albums from this past year is Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly and the song “Alright:” is definitely one of the best songs on the album. Kendrick is considered by many to be the conscious of Hip-Hop. Here, he delivers a catchy anthem that in the face of controversial issues like racism and police brutality guarantees that, “we gon’ be alllllright!” Which can be viewed as somewhat of a rallying call for college students whom often serve as catalysts for social change and progress.

    Migos – Spray the Champagne
    Whether you’re in the club or not, you cannot go to many places without hearing the rap trio of Quavo, Offset and Takeoff (Migos). Moreover, with the recent release of their debut album Young Rich Nation, the track “Spray the Champagne” follows the proven Migos formula, consisting of a catchy hook paired with their unique flow and delivery. This track celebrates success in the rap game, but really can be applied to anything. Quavo’s triumphant requests to “Spray the Champagne!” is enough to make any college student want to make a toast and celebrate their accomplishments.
    Fetty Wap Feat. Drake – My Way (Remix)
    Another one of the hottest artists of the year is Fetty Wap. In the spring, his second major single “My Way” got a facelift via a remix featuring Drake and has reached astronomical heights. Outside of class and parties, college students experience the highs and lows of relationships. This song is a fitting dedication to that special someone in your calculus class and serves as a cry for him or her to finally come your way.

    Cool Amerika – Make Sum’ Shake and K. Camp – Po’ Up & Go Up
    At the end of the week, it is always time to unwind. You have been trapped in DH Hill and your dorm rooms studying for exams and writing essays all week and come Friday, you are ready to turn up and let loose. These two songs serve as the perfect escape from your stressful academic life. The upstart duo Cool Amerika has polarized the south with their strip club anthem “Make Sum’ Shake”, which doubles to provide motivation as it declares that regardless of what life throws your way, you have the ability to “make sum’ shake” (or make the best out of a situation). In addition, K. Camp adds to his impressive catalog with this club-ready cut, inviting all comers to pour up cups of their favorite “beverages” and proceed to take the turn up to a higher level. These songs are work great on Friday walks to class as you gear up for whatever your resident DJ (DJ Fredo) may have in store for you that weekend.

  • 6342697021_3e5874e682_n
    Aug 12 2015

    Natural Hair, Real Talk

    Chauncey Bowden

    Whether you’re rocking a full grown afro, TWA, or are transitioning, being natural and new to campus can be a little tricky.
    However you choose to sport your hair is completely up to your discretion. So if you want to big job; go for it. And if you want to relax your hair; go for it!
    As someone who changes her hair at least once a week, I’m certain that there isn’t much I haven’t done to my hair. And while I didn’t start my career at NC State as “natural”, I have really enjoyed the process of learning my hair every day.
    Two weeks before my junior year started, I completely shaved my hair off. Now this is not for the faint at heart, and I’m not telling anyone to go and shave their hair off.
    I will tell you though, that shaving my head was a very liberating experience, and getting ready for class everyday tended to by very easy.
    Before I became natural, I didn’t understand all of the hype surrounding it, and even to this day, I think some people may place too much emphasis on what it means to be “natural”. However, once I did decide to go natural, it was like I joined a secret society. Women on campus would stop and compliment my TWA (teeny-weeny afro) and ask what products I used – I felt like I was embracing a new side of myself.
    Being an African American student on a predominately White campus may be daunting for some of you. And depending on your career path, you may be inclined to adopt Eurocentric beauty standards as the norm.
    But you should always remember that regardless of whether you’re the only Black woman in your class, or the only woman with an Afro, you are exactly where you need to be and you bring invaluable skills to this campus.
    Some of you will become doctors and lawyers, and I hope that you won’t trade in your afros for sleek bobs because you feel you have to.
    For my sisters who aren’t natural, keep slaying girl! Please don’t feel that because you rock Brazilian bundles, you are any less of Black women. Even as I type this piece I’m rocking a weave.
    Take the time to learn and love your hair. Don’t be afraid to try new things.
    If you ever need advice on how to flat twist your hair or don’t know where to find a protein treatment – don’t be afraid to ask me. Congratulations on becoming a part of the Wolfpack , Sis. I’ll see you around!

    DO try protective styles such as crochet braids, Marley twists and faux locs
    DON’T get heat damage from flat irons and blow dryers
    DO apply a protein treatment before and after applying heat to your hair
    DON’T bleach your hair if you aren’t prepared to condition it on a regular basis; things could get bad.
    DO trim your hair into a trendy haircut; heart
    shaped, tapered, TWA, etc.
    DON’T impulsively cut all of your hair off. You may regret it later, so give it a little thought before hand.
    DO learn your curl pattern and what products and styles work for you.
    DON’T be late to class because your hair isn’t done
    DO buy a cute printed scarf. Tie it in a turban, apply deep conditioner and condition while you are out and about
    DO watch YouTube tutorials to learn how to do new styles
    DO join Campus Curls and Kinks

  • 2014-2015 AASAC Leaders
    Aug 12 2015

    AASAC Chair shares plans for the upcoming year

    QuiAnne’ Holmes
    Staff Writer

    The Afrikan American Student Advisory Council, AASAC stands as the umbrella council organization for all the African and African-American student organizations at NC State.
    The main purpose of this council according to incoming chairperson Breanna Powell a senior majoring in social work, is to “serve as a forum for the exchange of ideas and the dissemination of information to all African American student organizations.”
    AASAC also implements three important goals in which they will continue to encourage their organizations to use. 1. To advocate for the education of African American students about their cultural heritage in order to promote and uplift an African centered consciousness. 2. To develop the leadership potential and the academic and professional development of all African American students through the reflection of the seven *Nguzo Saba principles. 3. To identify and address the needs and concerns of African American students through unity action and effective communications.
    AASAC does not serve as a sole source of programming but rather a catalyst to greater leadership and activism within its organizations. Powell said that AASAC encourages programs that are relevant to the current climate on campus as well as the national climate with the purpose of informing and educating not just African-American students, but all students.
    “As far as my goals for this year, I really want to continue stressing the importance of collaboration within and outside of AASAC. I also would like for each and every organization included under AASAC to really begin the process of learning the history of their organizations fulfilling the true purpose and mission of their respective organizations, as well as beginning to leave a legacy for the student leaders that will come after us. My executive board and I will implement an Accountability Partners system to help with collaboration and our community project for the year, the AASAC History Portfolio will really assist organizations in the process of fetching their history and paving a way for students that will take their places.”
    AASAC has a lot planned to uplift its organizations this year, according to Powell.
    In order to get to this place it is essential to assess the challenges along the way. AASAC has faced challenges of making sure each organization felt recognized and respected. Powell also acknowledges that past AASAC executive boards have done everything they could to establish a platform for AASAC so that everything they do from this point forward will be taken seriously.
    In all, if you are not a part of any of the organizations under the Afrikan American Student Advisory Council this could be your year to participate in a community full of goals, principles, and activism. Powell even has advice for the incoming freshmen: JUST DO IT! There are so many resources available to you and so many students, staff and faculty members who want to see you succeed. If you are trying to get involved, connect with any of us and we will lead you in the right direction!