MLK Day of honor and celebration, say Hampton U. students

By Carlton Griffin

The celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is a celebration of black excellence at its finest, and as a result most HBCUs [historically black colleges and universities] have some sort of program honoring his life and legacy. Hampton University will commence its annual MLK Day March on Monday, Jan. 16, at 10:30 a.m. Students are encouraged to attend as it not mandatory.

Jaelin McGull, a senior marketing major from St. Louis, plans to attend. He believes that King was an influential figure in his life and had a huge part in placing us in the state that black America is in now. "Obviously, we still have a lot to do, but progress is one step at a time," he said.

As for a handful of other students interviewed, some said yes, they will attend, some said no, some were still undecided.

Britney Bailey, a senior strategic communication major from McDonough, Georgia, said she will not be attending because she has been there before and the event gets repetitive. She believes there is more that could be done to make the event more enjoyable. "His life and legacy could be celebrated differently than marching from Point A to Point B," she said.

Allie-Ryan Butler, an assistant dean in the Scripps Howard School, said that event could use something different to attract more students, but encourages students to still attend the event as it is important to remember King during this peaceful transition of power as the first black president leaves office. "It is imperative that students attend this event, considering the state of Black America," said. Butler, adding he would like to see a panel discussion led by the new generation of activists on the current state of Black America as he thinks this would be a nice addition to the march.

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Several students interviewed have much anticipation for the annual MLK Day march and program on Monday. The march will start at the Emancipation Oak national landmark, where the slaves were read the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863. The program will be held in Ogden Hall, where Michael Anthony Battle, the former U.S. Ambassador to the African Union, will speak.

Battle once served as the dean of the University Chapel at Hampton University and pastor of the University's Memorial Church.

"I'm sure former Ambassador Battle will deliver a stellar speech while commemorating Dr. King's legacy," said Jolie Jemmott, a sophomore student leader and nursing major from Philadelphia. "It's great to know that he was once a part of Hampton's staff and I'm glad he is returning to deliver this speech,"

Others students believe MLK Day is a day to honor and serve Dr. King's legacy. Dr. King's frequently appeared in the media for speaking out against racial injustices and leading peaceful protests.

"Dr. King was a great community leader and made it OK to speak for what he believed in," said Brittany Bailey, a senior strategic communications major from McDonough, Georgia. "We can relive his work and honor him by doing community service."

Photo and additional reporting by Leondra Head. Both students are in the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications.

Hampton U. students reflect on MLK’s impact before annual celebration

By Carly Moon

Hampton University is preparing for its annual Martin Luther King Jr. holiday celebration on Monday, Jan. 16.

Students and faculty plan to participate in a campus-wide march beginning at 10 a.m. at the Emancipation Oak and end it at Ogden Hall. Following the march, there will be a program to honor King's legacy at 11 a.m.

The student attendance rate is predicted to reach a high this year due to the largest freshman class -- 1,400 students -- in Hampton's history, as well as participation by the many organizations on campus.

"I expect a good turnout from the student body. I hope they receive knowledge about what Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. truly stood for," said Anzell Harrell, director of Student Activities.

Instead of resting, some students said the will use the holiday to commemorate King by continuing his legacy of justice, service, and unity.

"MLK Day allows us to give back to the community and honor a man who paved the way for myself and future generations" said Joshua Thompson, a sophomore political science major from Salisbury, Maryland, pictured above right.

For some, this day symbolizes the similarities between the current and previous generations' social struggles. It reminds the youth that they have the ability to, therefore they must positively impact society just as King and other civil rights figures accomplished.

"MLK Day is emotional for me because I always think of how my grandparents were treated for the color of their skin rather than the great people they are" said Chardae Reeves, a sophomore psychology major from Columbus, Ohio. "Unfortunately, we still deal with that hatred today, so we have to pick up where Dr. King left off and continue demanding the equality we deserve."

Hampton is a diverse HBCU with many black students who come from cultures and communities that do not celebrate MLK Day as prominently as the university.

"At my predominantly white school, MLK Day wasn't a big deal," said Raquel Lewis, a second- year, five-year MBA major from Scotch Plains, New Jersey. "Coming to Hampton and seeing African-Americans unite for such a special day is a breathtaking experience"

With the help of former Hampton University Assistant Pastor Rev. Dr. Jerome A. Barber from Sixth Mount Zion Baptist Temple, the campus Office of Student Activities was able to secure a speaker for the program: Ambassador to the African Union, Michael Anthony Battle Sr., who served as Hampton University chaplain from 1976 to 1996.

Hampton University welcomes the public to attend Monday's event. For additional details, contact the Office of Student Activities at 757-727-5691.

Photo and additional reporting by Timia Whitsey. Both students are in the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications.

‘Hidden Figures’ author sells out museum book signing

By Trayonna Hendricks

HAMPTON, Virginia -- On Jan. 6, over 200 people wrapped around the Hampton History Museum for author Margot Lee Shetterly's "Hidden Figures" book signing. There were so many supporters in attendance, young and old, all inspired and or curious about the untold story of three black women making a huge contribution to American history right here in Virginia.

Chere Flowers, a Hampton native, said, "This story is enlightening for black women like me who don't know these things about our history. I had to come, especially with the event being here in Hampton at the History Museum, it made it even more appealing."

Alan Marshall, another Virginia native, found it shocking that this story even existed: "I've been here for about 30 years. I've never learned anything like this when I was in school, and I don't think my daughter learned anything like this when she was in high school."

Marshall came to the book signing in hopes of getting an autograph for his daughter, who graduated from Deep Creek High School in Chesapeake and interned at NASA. "Neither of us were familiar with this story until the film came out [but] I know it's a lot of history here in Virginia," said Marshall.

One person who did know about the so-called "human computers" prior to the releasing of this story was NASA Engineering and Safety Center Manager, Jill Prince. She said "There are pictures of them at NASA. I learned about them through word of mouth and found out more through research of my own." While standing in the autograph line with her daughter, Prince said, "I think it's fascinating, encouraging, and inspiring for young girls. I often share the story with students during outreach."

She was not the only one there who wanted to share this story; many people were purchasing and walking around with more than three books each. Fifty minutes into the two-hour event the museum sold out of Shetterly's books -- 200 copies according to the cashier -- and staff redirected buyers to Barnes & Noble, four miles away in the Peninsula Town Center.

Hampton History Museum Curator Allen Holmin said, "We usually only receive about 80 people for a book signing. Margot Lee Shetterly was an exception."

Shetterly's mother, Margaret Lee, was amazed by all of the support her daughter's book received. With tears in her eyes she said, "It's overwhelming, the whole idea. All she wanted was to tell these women story, and it has just blossomed into so much more." Filled with gratitude, Lee, a retired Hampton University English professor, reflected on the story herself and said, "It's a bit of history that up to this point hadn't been told."

According to Lee, seeing the film will teach audiences many lessons about following their dreams and standing up for what they believe is right. "Another lesson in this movie," she said is, "You should never give up on your dreams. You have to have enough courage to follow your dreams in spite of what's going on around you."

Lee hopes the story her daughter has shared inspires others to look into their history. "Ask your elders questions and write down or record what they say," she said. "You never know what stories they have to tell."

The writer is a student in the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications.

Hampton U. Celebrates World AIDS Day

By Stephanie Smith

In 1988, the global health event World AIDS Day was established. In honor of this day, Hampton University's Health Center will be offering free HIV testing and free flu shots Thursday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Student Center Ballroom.

Free HIV testing requires student ID. With just a prick of a finger, you can be sure of your status. Be among the first 50 patients and you will receive a free doughnut from Glazed Doughnuts in exchange.

Flu shots will be offered in the ballroom as well. These vaccines will be offered to students, faculty and staff. The only requirement that differs from the HIV testing requirements is that you must be 18 years or older.

Two HIV informational speakers will also be present in the ballroom. A HU Health Center spokeswoman said that there will be an Eastern Virginia Medical School representative who will share their personal encounter with HIV. The Delta Sigma Theta organization collaborated with HU's Health Center to recruit another speaker. After the guest speakers, live entertainment will then take place in the Student Center Atrium.

Since the virus was identified, more than 35 million people have died of HIV or AIDS. With AIDS being one of the most destructive pandemics in history, World AIDS Day is a nationwide opportunity for people to come together and fight against HIV. It's also an opportunity to commemorate those who have died and to show support for those living with HIV.

On World AIDS Day, money is raised, prejudice is fought, and awareness increases while education is improved. Anyone can support and spread awareness by wearing the symbolic red ribbon. Red ribbons can be purchased and donations are accepted on Donations are then given to the National AIDS Trust organization.

World AIDS Day's purpose is to remind the public and government that HIV has not disappeared. Stop by the Student Center Ballroom Thursday and celebrate. Help spread the word to help educate others about HIV. Get tested for free and know your status.

The writer is a student in the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications.

Machines thinner than hair, studied at Hampton U.

By Daneisha LaTorre

In October, the 2016 Nobel Prize for Chemistry was awarded to three men – Jean-Pierre Sauvage, Sir J. Frasser Stoddert and Bernard L. Feringa – for their design of a synthesis molecule machine. The synthesis molecule was one billionth of the size of a conventional machine.

In fact, if someone were to cut a strand a hair down to its smallest unit, it would still not be a nanometer.

Nanoscience, which is the study of structures and materials on the nanometer scale, was not exclusively recognized by the Nobel Prize winners. At Hampton University, members of the School of Science are also doing Nanoscience projects.

Michelle Claville, Ph.D., an organic chemist who serves as the assistant dean of the School of Science, established the Nanoscience concentration on campus in 2012. The Nanoscience Project of Hampton University is operating with $3.4 million in grants from the National Science Foundation. NSF also sponsored 25 Hampton University students with $3,000 to $5,000 each in scholarships to do research, study and teach others Nanoscience.

The scholars of the NanoHU grant are required to earn a minor in Nanoscience, which was developed specifically for the program. Scholars are also required to do year-round research, which is partially funded by the NanoHU grant and partially funded by the students.

Students of the program also have a summer requirement. NanoHU partners with other universities, including North Carolina-Charlotte, Indiana and Nebraska University School of Medicine, where they are able to do additional research.

"We do not just choose students with 4.0; we want students with different GPA's," said Claville. "We want all different types of students to be able to see how much each student grows after our summer research course."

In addition to students, NanoHU recently announced a request for professors to receive 25 percent additional funding in order to have time to do research.

In 2013, NanoHU adopted a summer enrichment course for high school students. Eight high school students from the city of Hampton were chosen to participate in a six-week program to learn about Nanoscience and also do their own research.

Last year, NanoHU widened its focus to elementary school students. Claville said the program conducted a Mad Scientist Night at Barron Fundamental Elementary School. During this event, the Hampton students demonstrated how to make lava lamps.

The writer is a student in the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications.

Hampton U. millennials focused on legacy at election watch party

By DeAndrea Chavis

Hampton University Student Government Association and six other organizations hosted an election watch night party 7 to 11 p.m. Tuesday in the Student Center ballroom.

As the votes came in over the large flat screen TV students cheered if results went the way they wanted; others booed if results were the opposite. The majority of the 500 students present were supporting the Democratic Party so the tension in the room was thick when the first few red GOP states were called winners. [Overnight, Republican Donald Trump won based on the Electoral College tally. Clinton lost yet by Wednesday morning led in the popular vote].

To keep everyone excited and busy while waiting for the results there were games to play and a photo booth to take pictures. These games included spades, pin the policy on Hillary Clinton and pin the hair of Donald Trump.

Although this was a fun and energetic event, conversations among students were very serious. Students talked amongst each other about what they expected to happen during this nail biting election.

"My thought going into the watch party is that I am very apprehensive about the results that are soon to come. I pray that Trump doesn't become president and Hillary can deliver and handle the position appropriately," said Khaci Lewis, sophomore psychology major from Prince George's County, Maryland.

This generation of voters realize that this election is very important and will affect them greatly.

"My thoughts going into this watch party consisted of constant prayer," said Victoria Daniels, a sophomore journalism major from Raleigh, North Carolina. "I hope that people went to the polls today and voted for the smarter choice in this presidential election, because the next president's policies will have a huge effect on our generation."

Many Hampton U. students were first-time voters, and had grown up in middle and elementary schools with President Barack Obama. "I expect our next president to appropriately serve America keeping all citizens in mind," said Daniels. "I would like to see equal rights for minorities, women, and the LGBT community. I hope the White House remains scandal-free and our president does what they say they will do."

Other students' main concern was whether Obamas legacy will be respected.

"I expect the next president to not be as great as Obama honestly," said Lewis, "but I do believe that the next president should try to do everything in their power to make strides in an effort to continue Obama's legacy."

The writer is a student in the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications.

Hampton U. students cruise on Election Day shuttle

By Tai Belford

HAMPTON, Virginia – Hampton University makes sure their students didn't have any excuse to not be a part of this year's 2016 presidential election.

Tuesday morning Hampton University students rushed to the polls at Phoebus High School on behalf of Hampton University's Election Day shuttle. The university provided an all-day bus shuttle that transported students to the polls and returned to campus for drop-off. This gave students who may not have a way around a chance to vote in this year's historic presidential election.

When the shuttle arrived at 12:30 p.m. for departure to the polls, most of the students were females. The line for the shuttle was down the street full of young HU voters and when the bus arrived, many were left behind due to overcapacity.

Freshmen Nyla Green and Taylor Harvey told a Daily Press reporter that their desire to vote was instilled at an early age by their mothers. Both are African-American, and they know that their fore bearers fought for that right.

"I'm missing class right now. However, it is more important to cast my vote than to attend class at this moment," said Andre Martin, a junior art major.

When the bus arrived at Phoebus High School, many Hampton students were waiting. Some arrived by personal transportation, but most were waiting for their return shuttle back to campus outside of the school.

Donald Trump campaign signs around the school grounds were vandalized, while Hillary Clinton's signs remained untouched. Inside the polling station, the lines were very short and the voting process took no longer than the wait in line.

Senior citizens from Sinclair Commons Senior Living Community were also in attendance to cast their votes.

"I love to see that our young black generation is exercising their right to vote," said senior citizen Ethelda Scott. "Every vote counts."

The writer is a student in the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications.

Jetting home to vote in Virginia

By Nia Wellman

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Marilyn Bulb, a flight attendant who lives in North Carolina, but is a Virginia resident, said she was flying home Tuesday morning to vote.

"And I'm not voting for [Donald] Trump," said the Suffolk native. "I'll tell you that."

Mina Jones, of Chesapeake, who identified herself as a housewife, said she was not voting once she returned home.

However Cary Carrigan of Bankersville, Calif., who is active duty U.S. Navy, said she was "voting, once I hit that Virginia soil."

The writer is a Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications student. Wellman was returning to school from San Francisco and interviewed Election Day travelers during a layover.

Conflicted GOP feelings in Va. for Trump candidacy

By Maya Gray

This election season has been historic to say the least and it culminates on Tuesday, Nov. 8.

Up until recently, Donald Trump trailed Hillary Clinton in the polls but due to her ongoing email scandal, the race is now very close. The Trump and Clinton campaigns are working vigorously to garner votes in battleground swing states. Virginia has historically been a swing state, but for this election the Trump campaign for the most part has forfeited the 13 electoral votes.

After the 2005 video of Donald Trump and Billy Bush was released, Virginia GOP leaders called for Trump's removal from the ballot. Shortly after the scandalous video was released, Corey Stewart, the Virginia state chairman of the Trump campaign, staged a protest outside of the Republican National Committee headquarters. The demonstration was held to protest the RNC and their lack of support for Trump, but it was done without the support of the actual Trump campaign. Stewart was warned that if he were to follow through with the protest he would be relieved of his position.

Stewart, who was ultimately fired, did not let that deter him from supporting Trump.

When speaking Oct. 10 to WUSA-TV 9, Stewart said "I am deathly loyal, and I am going to be supporting [Trump] and supporting his candidacy all the way to the end."

Speaking to CNN, the Republican Party's Virginia chairman, John Whitbeck, supported the campaign's "decision to remove their Virginia chairman. With less than a month until Election Day, we can't afford any distractions."

The Trump campaign never officially pulled out of Virginia but decided to focus more on swing states like North Carolina where they believe they have a better chance of winning.

In a CNN article, John Ullyot, deputy political director for communications for Trump's campaign, said "we remain absolutely committed to winning in Virginia. While we're reallocating some of our staff strategically to accommodate early voting in nearby priority states such as North Carolina, our campaign leadership and staffing remains strong in Virginia."

This election has been vital for American youth and it is imperative that the candidates have their support. The Clinton campaign has appealed to the youth and minority vote by being a constant presence on college campuses, especially at HBCUs, including Hampton University.

Yet, Trump support on Virginia college campuses has been almost nonexistent. Students at Liberty University, a Christian college known for its conservative views, renounced their support for Trump. Mike Pence, Trump's running mate recently gave a speech at Liberty and was not met with enthusiasm from the student body.

The students at Liberty released a ">statement after Pence's speech: "We are Liberty students who are disappointed with President [Jerry Jr.] Falwell's endorsement and are tired of being associated with one of the worst presidential candidates in American history. Donald Trump does not represent our values and we want nothing to do with him."

Trump's campaign could have done a lot more to secure the votes they needed to win Virginia but that was not their priority. On Tuesday we can see which way Virginia decides to swing to elect our 45th president.

The writer is a student in the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications.

If Hillary Clinton wins, America joins world of women chiefs

By Jada Saxon and Maraya Henderson

Women are not well known to hold executive positions, especially in America, but on Tuesday history could be made as we select our 45th President of the United States. The choice is between Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump. Clinton is no rookie when it comes to politics and running for office as she has already served in multiple positions throughout her career.

Clinton attended Wellesley College, graduating in 1969, and earned her Juris Doctor Degree from Yale in 1973. In 1975 she married Bill Clinton and in 1977, she co-founded Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families. At age 30, Hillary did what no other woman had done before: Not only was she the first female chair of the Legal Services Corporation, she was also the first woman partner at Rose Law Firm.

Her husband Bill became governor of Arkansas in 1979. As First Lady she was able to help reform Arkansas's public schools. A dozen years later, Clinton became the First Lady of the United States. Her main focus has always been about healthcare and the importance of fostering the best life for children.

Clinton was elected in 2000 as the first female U.S. senator from New York, and in 2009 she became the Secretary of State after losing the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination to Barack Obama.

If Clinton is elected on Tuesday then, she will become the first woman president of the United States.

"Hillary has achieved so much," said Mariah Coston (photo, top right), a sophomore biology pre-med major from Chicago. "She's such a big inspiration for women and I believe that will allow her to get majority of the female vote."

Clinton is a great influence to women because she has achieved all her goals and she continues to strive to do better. Most women are pleased with just being the first lady or having a high-status husband, but Clinton wanted more. She was never OK with just living in her husband's shadow, and that's what many women look up to the most.

Clinton is not the only female to take on such government leader roles around the world. Other women such as Dilma Rousseff of Brazil, Joyce Banda of Malawi, and Cristina Fernandez of Argentina have successfully taken on leadership roles for their countries.

"I believe Hillary is most qualified for the position, unlike Trump," said Kendra Dorsey (photo, left), a marine environmental science major from Atlanta. "She respects and honors the fact that we are all equal no matter shape, size, or color."

* * *

A WOMAN COMMANDER IN CHIEF was probably the last thing many people thought would happen to this country. With the Tuesday election the chances of the United States being run by a woman is scaring some voters. When speaking to some Hampton University students and asking if they were ready for a woman to hold office, some members of male population were not ecstatic about giving their votes to a woman, yet they acknowledged Hillary Clinton is their best choice.

"A woman in office would have never been a thought for America until now and I'm not sure this country is ready to face the fact that a woman has a very good chance to become the leader of this free world," said Jamir Esdaile, a five-year MBA major from New Haven, Connecticut.

This is a country that stands by the old-fashioned ways of going about life and one of the biggest assumptions is that women are not suited to hold leadership positions. Many Americans cannot see a woman being able to successfully run this country because it's assumed to be a man's job and not a position for a woman to hold.

"Women are too emotional to have such an important job," said Marcus Ricks, a sports management major from Ashland, Virginia. "If Hillary were to become president she would probably send us to war just because her and Bill had an argument last night."

Although Clinton would be United States' first female president, if she were to win, many other countries have successfully been led by women long before us. Currently 22 countries have females in leadership positions and are successfully running their countries.

"The United States is a great country and if a third world country can successfully operate with a female in office, I think a country like ours will be able to survive as well," said Ronyae Northam, an elementary education major from Durham, North Carolina.

Ready to make history, many voters have put aside their beliefs and plan to give the female candidate, Hilary Clinton, their votes. Whether it is with full support or complete resistance, these voters are finally ready to hear the results.

The writers are students in the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications.

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