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  • Jan 22 2014

    “O”ver Time

    President Obama Makes a Second Trip to N.C. State in Two Years to Announce The Next Generation Power Electronics Institute 

    Aaron Thomas | Staff Writer

    President Barack Obama made his way back to N.C. State this past Wednesday to discuss the major role the University would play in an effort to stimulate the economy. When Student Body President, Alex Parker made the announcement that there was an allotment of only 500 tickets available for students to hear the president speak, many waited in line for hours, only to be left empty-handed.

    This however, was not the case for NCSU upperclassmen De’Kia Battle and Tiffany Johnson. Both Battle, a senior in business administration and Johnson, a junior double majoring in communication and political science, managed to get one of the coveted tickets. This would be second time that the two saw President Obama live at N.C. State.

    “Many people haven’t had the experience to see a sitting president twice,” said Battle. “ [To be able to do so] was an excellent opportunity.” Johnson described her experience of being in the same room as the president twice during two terms as “unbelievable.”

    For Battle, the second opportunity also allowed her to become more engaged in what the president was speaking about. “I’ve learned more about how certain issues affect me as an American,” she said.

    Wednesday’s speech was much different than Obama’s speech during his first visit to campus. During the 2011 speech in Reynolds Coliseum, he highlighted the benefits of the Affordable Care Act.  This go-round the President announced a $140 million electronic manufacturing initiative that will be headquartered by N.C. State.

    Participants in Wednesday’s crowd listened attentively to Obama as he described the new initiative, and how the technology would help improve energy-efficiency. Obama also placed emphasis on the economic gains the initiative will bring to NCSU as well as the Triangle. A key point in his speech was building a stronger middle class. Focusing on what he believes has to be a “Year of Action,” President Obama said he was acting without Congress on WBG technology because it will help create jobs.

    Battle said she is hopeful that it will add to a thriving economy as she prepares for graduate school. “My expectation is to see more jobs here in the United States instead of [them] being outsourced overseas.”

    Though both students are thankful to have seen President Obama twice while at N.C. State, they agree that this time was a bit more special. “I feel like the second experience was in a closer setting, it felt more sentimental,” Johnson said. “You felt like he was speaking to you personally.”

    According to the Technician, N.C. State will work alongside four universities and 18 companies. Battle thinks that this shows just how great N.C. State is. “For President Obama to choose the University as a candidate for the manufacturing initiative, it speaks volumes to the impact it has,” said Battle.  “N.C. State is one of the best universities in the country. Students that are enrolling at the University are coming out willing to drive the workforce. We are the next generation.”

    Check out the gallery below for more photos from President Obama’s visit! 







  • A Chemistry student and member of Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) program, designed to recruit, retain, and graduate women in the STEM fields | Photo courtesy of NCSU Admissions
    Jan 22 2014

    Discrimination Stems in STEM Majors


    Vernon Holman | Staff Writer 

    Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics are fields notoriously dominated by men. Women within STEM fields often suffer discrimination and scrutiny (both directly and indirectly)  by professors, researchers, and their peers. According to a study published by the Association of American Colleges and Universities “academically capable women are more likely to leave STEM majors compared to men with similar grades.” Women in STEM fields at N.C. State are no stranger to this type of discrimination.

    A Chemistry student and member of the Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) program, designed to recruit, retain, and graduate women in the STEM fields.
    Photo courtesy of NCSU Office of Undergraduate Admissions

    “I do feel that being a woman, especially in the higher sciences, that I am not ‘taken as seriously’ as my male counterparts and colleagues,” said Dr. Danesha Seth-Carley, a professor in the department of Crop Science and Coordinator of  Sustainability Programs in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. Seth-Carley recalled a faculty event at which she was approached by someone and asked, “…and whose wife are you?”  Seth-Carley was offended by this statement saying, “Since this was a faculty event, and I was a younger female, [it was assumed that]  I must have been a faculty spouse, rather than a member of the faculty.”

    Morgan Davis, a sophomore in Biology, said that when partnered with two boys in her physics lab, “I’d have to force conversation so I would be involved.” Similarly Katavia Teachey, a sophomore in Computer Science said, “In a Computer Science class mainly of guys, when we would do class work the guys next to me would rather turn all the way around to ask someone before they ask me for help.”

    According to Gabby Roseboro, a sophomore in Computer Science, “People usually reply with some microaggressions when I say I’m in Comp Sci [Computer Science] or they see me in class. They say things like ‘I didn’t know you were so smart’ or ‘Wow! You’re so pretty. You coda?’” For Roseboro, statements like these aren’t a compliment. “There are people expressing how confused they are because girls aren’t  supposed to be smart, and if they are, they’re supposed to be unattractive.”

    The trend connecting these women is that their colleagues and peers do not see them as such. If women do not get the encouragement, or at the very least equal treatment, by their male counterparts how will we ever see a proportional number of women and men in STEM majors and fields.

    I do not think most men knowingly discriminate against females, however we judge others by their actions and not their intentions. With this in mind, you may want to ask yourself have you ever discriminated against anyone, not just a women, directly or indirectly. You could be a part of the problem rather than a part of the solution.

  • Jan 22 2014

    We Don’t Mean No Disrespect, But…


    This unsigned editorial is the opinion of the Nubian Message’s editorial board, and is the responsibility of the editor-in-chief. 


    Martin had a dream and it was not his face on the cover of party promotional fliers.

    After his death in 1963, many advocated for his birthday to become a federal holiday and it was not until 20 years later in 1983 that it was signed into law. Our parents’ generation fought for a holiday to commemorate the life of Dr. King and some of y’all have turned this into a money making opportunity.

    It seems like the sacrifices made and rights fought for have been lost in loud music and heavy bass. What began as the face of change and hope for a brighter future has become a symbol for “turn up.” Photoshopping Dr. King’s image is disrespectful to his legacy and memory, his family and the cause he spent his life supporting.

    Dr.King’s holiday is a “day on, not a day off.” Next year, instead of using Dr. King’s image as a gimmick, use the day to uplift one another. Take time to remember what Dr. King accomplished  in his lifetime and encourage one another to dream. Reflect on the power of Dr.King’s everlasting legacy that continues to inspire millions today.



  • Cameroonian/Nigerian pop singer, Dencia, before and after using skin lightening cream. She recently released her Whitenicious product.
    Jan 21 2014

    Our Ugly Obsession: Skin Bleaching


    Amanda McKnight Staff Writer

    Cameroonian/Nigerian pop singer, Dencia, has caused an uproar on social media with the release of Whitenicious, “a high-end skin care product line suitable for all skin types.”

    The success of Dencia’s product brings light to the prevalence of skin lightening to those in the US who may have never even heard of the practice.

    Skin lightening products are used by people of color, especially women, all over the world.

    According to the World Health Organization (WHO) 77 percent of Nigerian women have admitted to using skin lightening products regularly. With numbers like that, it is not hard to believe that the Nigerian based singer’s product sold out after one day on the market. Do not be fooled, it’s not just a Black thing. 40 percent of women in China, Malaysia, The Philippines and The Republic of Korea admit to using skin lightening products and in India lighteners make up 61 percent of the skin care market.

    Cameroonian/Nigerian pop singer, Dencia, before and after using skin lightening cream. She recently released her Whitenicious product.

    Cameroonian/Nigerian pop singer, Dencia, before and after using skin lightening cream. She recently released her Whitenicious product.

    Mercury, a main ingredient in many skin lightening products, has extremely adverse effects on health. It can cause damage to the liver, kidney, nervous system and brain if it is used in large quantities. It’s not just your health that is damaged when using skin lighteners, but your wallet as well. Whitenicious retails at $50 to $150 depending on the size of the jar.

    Even with these high prices, women sometimes feel that lightening their skin    is a necessity to be successful according to President of African Student Union, Nnenna Akaronu. “There is a pressure to skin bleach because for women who want to help their families and make money, they see other women who have skin bleached get jobs and be successful.”

    The issue of skin bleaching is bigger than Dencia, according to Akaronu, “The thing with skin bleaching is that they don’t think of it as bleaching, it’s called ‘toning’ used for dark spots. Some women do not even know it is bleaching they just think, ‘Oh this cream makes my dark spots go away.’”

    Advertisements for skin lightening creams in Ghana.

    Advertisements for skin lightening creams in Ghana.

    Skin lightening is a big business.The, reports that the industry will pull in about $15 billion globally. Justin Hills, a Senior in Human Biology, saw advertisements for skin lightening creams while doing research in Ghana. “I was rather disturbed by the skin lightening ads I saw because many of the products asserted themselves as a means to achieve ‘true African beauty.” Though Dencia did not start the trend of skin lightening by selling her product, she is definitely making money off the old idea of “light is right.”