Audacity Project- Bullying

[host intro]

 

Bullying is one of the largest forms of violence in schools today. In fact, 1 out of 4 kids is bullied and over 43% of adolescents have been bullied online. Christiansburg’s Alexandra Wolff is an advocate for stopping the violence after enduring it herself throughout middle school in Maryland. She is here today to discuss her experience and how to make sure other children do not go through what she was forced to go through. Alexandra, what was it like for you to endure such terrible criticism from your peers?

[:29]

 

[Alexandra]

 

FOR A LOT OF TIME I KEPT IT TO MYSELF BECAUSE I FELT LIKE I WAS A TARGET AND A VICTIM, AND IT WAS VERY EMBARRASSING AND I WAS ALMOST ASHAMED THAT THIS WAS HAPPENING TO ME. I FELT LIKE, ‘WHY DO I HAVE TO BE THE DIFFERENT ONE? WHY CAN’T I BE NORMAL AND BE WITH OTHER KIDS, YOU KNOW?’

[:14]

 

[host]

 

So, was there anyone within the school who would help you?

[:03]

 

[Alexandra]

 

MY FOURTH GRADE TEACHER WAS THE ONLY ONE WHO EVER NOTICED IT. HE USED TO REARRANGE THE ROOM ALL OF THE TIME SO HE WOULD MAKE SURE THAT I WOULD BE IN HIS VIEW AND THAT THE OTHER STUDENTS WHO BULLIED ME WOULD BE AWAY FROM ME.

[:12]

 

[host]

 

What would you say are some of the main signs or symptoms of a child who is being bullied?

[:06]

 

[Alexandra]

I THINK ONE OF THE MAJOR SIGNS IS YOUR KID WILL NOT WANT TO GO TO SCHOOL. THEY WILL BE AFRAID, THEY WILL BE CRYING ON THE WEEKENDS. THEY WILL BE REALLY ANXIOUS TO GO BACK BECAUSE THEY WILL FEEL LIKE ALL THEIR PEERS ARE AGAINST THEM, THEY WON’T BE ABLE TO TRUST…NOT BEING ABLE TO ENJOY ACTIVITIES THEY ONCE DID ENJOY. CHANGING IN EATING HABITS, SLEEPING

[:20]

 

[host]

So, finally you decided enough was enough and I understand that you went to Maryland legislators to seek some kind of conclusion, to see if there was something that they could do to stop the bullying. Tell us about that.

[:14]

 

[Alexandra]

THE BILL WAS TO DEFINE THE MODERN POLICY FOR BULLYING AND IT WAS TO TELL WHAT YOU DO IF YOU ARE BEING BULLIED, WHERE TO GO TO, HOW TO END BULLYING, HOW TO CONTACT THE PARENT. I MEAN, IT WAS JUST A WHOLE LONG LIST OF DIFFERENT THINGS YOU HAD TO GO THROUGH.

[:16]

 

[host close]

Alexandra worked tirelessly with legislators to get a law passed requiring Maryland schools to do more to prevent bullying. Thanks to her, and others like her, we are taking steps to stop bullying. If you or someone you know is being bullied, you can go to www.stompoutbullying.org to not only get help, but to help others get help. Let’s all lend a hand to stop the drama and end bullying for good.

[:27]

Advertisements

Quadfest

Every year, Radford University is the host to Quadfest, a weekend-long party with hundreds of people and endless amounts of alcohol. Students and citizens of Radford are divided as to whether it benefits the town or not. Junior Jameson Smith participates in Quadfest and believes that “As long as everyone is legal and acts like they have some sense, it shouldn’t be taken away”.

This year, 438 charges were filed and only 76 were actually Radford students. With so many students from other schools coming for the event, it is becoming more and more difficult to gain control. JMU’s SpringFest party is similar to Quadfest and turned into a riot 2 years ago, bringing SWAT teams in to fire rubber pellets and tear gas. “I think the idea of Quadfest is good, but it’s been ruined by the past few years, especially SpringFest” says senior Blaine Morgan. This has dramatically changed the way Quadfest is looked at by law enforcement and faculty at RU. Lucy Chambers is a senior at RU and has been attending Quadfest for the past 3 years. “Some of my friends got tickets, but it was mostly people that don’t go here and just don’t know what to look out for. Most people that go here know what to look for and know how to handle themselves” said Chambers.

Norleem Pomerantz, Vice President for Student Affairs said in 2009 “At approximately this time every year, some students engage in a massive weekend party that floods into the streets around campus and draws other students and people from throughout the region. Because of the large numbers of people involved — many not even associated with the University — the Radford City Police Department, the Radford University Police Department, and law enforcement agencies from the region will have a significant presence in the City of Radford throughout this weekend. Their main purpose is to help keep people safe by enforcing the law.”

Quadfest actually began as a music festival in 1996, until the University disassociated themselves from it 10 years later due to the massive consumption of alcohol and partying that occurred.

Radford’s Sustainability Plans

Jefferson Hall, next to Madison Hall, both of which underwent renovations to become more eco-friendly.

Radford University has taken on the great challenge of becoming more green and eco-friendly. Through several renovations, events and planning, they have made great progress in reducing their carbon footprint.

Madison and Jefferson residence halls underwent an extensive $10 million renovation in 2009, including bamboo flooring in all lounges, air-conditioning and a bathroom for each room. Freshman Patrick Berry lived in Jefferson Hall this year, and noted that “It’s really cool knowing I not only get a really nice dorm room but I am helping the environment at the same time”. Both dorms save 987,000 gallons of water annually through the use of low-flow toilets, sinks and showers. Moffett Hall is currently being renovation with similar upgrades to add to the sustainability plans.

In recognition of these efforts, RU was awarded two State Environmental Excellence Awards. A bronze award was given for the installation of a magnetic bearing chiller in Preston Hall and an honorable mention was given for competing in campus conservation. Every year, Radford participates in Campus Conservation Nationals, a three week competition to reduce electricity and water usage. In recent years, RU has placed as high as 3rd. In addition to that, an entire list of eco-friendly events have been brought to campus, including Recycle Mania, National Campus Sustainability Week and Ytoss, in which clothing, furniture and other housewares can be donated to those in need at the end of the semester.

Climate Action Planning is the next big focus, where RU is in the process of developing a campus wide plan to reduce greenhouse gas. The Sustainability Steering Committee continuously hosts three hour long workshops to get input from students and faculty. “The workshops,” says junior Cole Fields, “are really informative and allow us to speak our opinion and give feedback on the progress so far”. With plans like these, Radford will no doubt conserve more and more energy and make our world greener for a little longer.

Hokies Mourn Losses

Monday marked the 5th anniversary of the Virginia Tech tragedy, where the lives of 32 students were lost. As thousands of Hokies gathered on the Drillfield for the candlelight vigil and commemoration, mixed feelings of sorrow and pride hung low in the air.

Looking through social media outlets, like Facebook and Twitter, the huge amount of support is felt by everyone, whether from rival schools at UVA or alumni who graduated years ago.

Over 10,000 were in attendance at the vigil, even though the majority were not students at Virginia Tech 5 years ago. Brian Lusher was a senior in high school at the time and still felt strong emotions, “it’s different being a student at Virginia Tech who wasn’t here for the tragedy, but all one can feel is the huge sense of pride in the community and Hokie Nation that backs the school to this day, year in and year out”. Senator Bob McDonnell addressed the massive crowd during the ceremony and proclaimed April 16 as Virginia Tech Remembrance Day in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

In addition to the vigil, Hokies commemorated their Hokie angels with a ‘3.2 for 32’ Remembrance Run on Saturday. The event brought out more than 4,000 people and was kicked off by releasing 32 white balloons into the air.

Chris Fowler, host of ESPN’s College GameDay, gave his support by saying that Virginia Tech’s “sense of unity has never been more needed. It was touching that under the weight of so many other emotions, Tech students seemed saddened that the school they love forever could be branded as the site of an historic massacre. To those of us who have spent time there, Tech always will be recognized for much more than the hours of tragedy April 16, 2007”.

The Monday Boredom

Image

Mondays are always the most dreaded day of the week, filled with classes, work and no fun. Thankfully, two Radford students took it upon themselves to bring entertainment into everyone’s homes for an hour. The Monday Boredom, featuring Ryan DeShazo and Nik Abi-Najm, is Radio Free Radford’s latest and greatest radio show. These two avid skateboarders with eclectic taste in music and high energy allowed me to sit in and co-host with them for a night, and I assure you that my Monday was, in fact, NOT boring.

                DeShazo and Abi-Najm collaborated on everything from the idea, to the name, to the music they play. Both tossed around the idea of a radio show, keeping in mind that “a lot of people are bored on Mondays,” notes Nik. During the show, they are on Facebook to chat with friends, take song requests and give shout-outs to their many followers.

                The small studio is set up in a Radford University owned apartment complex on Dark Side and features music the boys collect themselves from friends and the internet. Their only rule for music? “We don’t play stuff you hear on the radio” says Ryan. And Nik adds that even better, “it’s not FCC rated so we can say, play and pretty much do whatever we want”. So far, so good, as they have had as many as 300 listeners tune into their 60 minute show from all over Virginia.

                The Monday Boredom plays every Monday from 9 to 10pm on Radio Free Radford’s website or on RFR’s app for iPhone and Android phones.  

Addressing an audience: Kevin Daley

           The perfect capstone to any communications major’s senior year should be having the privilege to listen to Kevin Daley’s presentation on how to address an audience. Daley visited Radford during Communications Week last Tuesday and his speech was nothing short of inspirational and informative. As the former Vice President of the J. Walter Thompson agency, he has given many speeches and presentations in front of hundreds of people and always keeps in mind that “speaking is about impacting the mind of the listener”.

            Having stage fright when speaking to a large crowd is no rare phobia. In fact, Daley said, “41% of people are scared of speaking in public”. But scared or not, it is important to keep a level head with the tips Daley gave because “if they don’t buy you, they don’t buy your message”. Body language is everything; the eyes should be scanning the audience without focusing, as the eye is the only part connected to the brain stem. Also, a bad stance can throw off the whole presentation and distract listeners from paying attention to your words and instead wondering why you look so uncomfortable.

            Daley divided the impact of a presentation into 3 different sections: how you look is 55%, how you sound is 38% and what you actually say is only 7%. His best advice? Talk louder! “You may feel like you’re too loud but the audience doesn’t think so”.

            His advice on creating a resume provided some comedic relief as he told stories about how he put flying off aircraft carriers and tightrope walking as hobbies, merely to start conversation. “Sell yourself,” said Daley, “let them know what you’re most proud of”.

            Whether publicly speaking or making your resume come to life, Daley made sure all listeners left with the same message: Be you, be confident and make an impact.

http://kdspeak.com/

Delegates and the Media

Delegate Greg Habeeb, representing the 8th district, stopped by Radford University for a press conference to discuss media misinformation last Wednesday. As a father, lawyer and delegate, it was quite an honor to have him make the time to field questions from aspiring journalists. His main topics of interest revolved around how “the media’s focus and facts were wrong” and how “many people have no idea what is going on in Richmond”.

A hot topic in politics lately has been the HB9 bill regarding voter ID. As of March 10, the bill had passed both House and Senate with the revisions stating that if the voter has no ID, a provisionary ballot will be extended for the time being. The media has released statements claiming that minorities, elderly people and college students may not have proper identification. Habeeb took it upon himself to file a complaint, causing the newspaper to post a retraction. This bill was among many others that Habeeb found to be placed in the wrong light or no light at all via the media.

“It is the media’s job to frame issues and set up conversations,” said Habeeb, highlighting the budget, public safety, legalizing marijuana and the Virginia retirement system among those that did not get the coverage they deserved.  While there could be many potential reasons for this, Habeeb firmly believes that “these issues deserved debate”.

With 68 Republicans and 32 Democrats in the Senate, it is not always easy to get in touch with your delegate. This is not the case with Greg Habeeb, who has a private and public Facebook account, a Twitter account and his cell phone number publicly displayed. He looks at Twitter as “a way to interact… and it has an expanded political role this year”, and Facebook as “a way to expand conversation with friends, fans and family to let them see who you really are”. He has taken to social media to let people know where he will be speaking, what he is doing, his opinion on things and “setting the record straight”.

Currently, Habeeb is working on five different bills, ranging in everything from school calendar to jury sentencing reform to civil rights restoration. But aside from his delegate duties, Greg plays an active role in his church, is on the Board of Directors for Big Brothers Big Sisters, and works with the Military Family Support Center. He got his start in politics through interning for then Governor George Allen and was later endorsed by Governor Bob McDonnell to run for a seat in the Virginia House of Delegates, which he won without opposition. Today, he is on four different committees: House Courts of Justice, House Transportation and House Militia, Police and Public Safety and Commerce & Labor. Following his first session as Delegate, Habeeb said on his website that “most satisfying to me is that we were able to accomplish so much, not only without raising taxes, but while actually cutting fees…” which speaks volumes about his dedication and loyalty to making his district a better place.