Tricked out news bus wows Hampton U. students

By Taylour Walker

On Thursday, the C-SPAN Mobile Bus stopped by Hampton University's Student Center as part of their HBCU Bus Tour. C-SPAN is a public affairs network, which was created to provide public access to government proceedings within the U.S. Congress. With more than 250,000 hours of programs online, C-SPAN has become a valuable research tool. To promote their successful Internet endeavor, the C-SPAN Mobile Bus travels to schools nationwide for educational outreach and program production.

After an interview with President William R. Harvey that morning, the C-SPAN Mobile Bus opened its doors to students. Along with a warm respite from the near-freezing cold, walls lined with interactive touch screens welcomed students as they walked in.

A curious and active crowd filed into the bus with questions and cameras ready. While many were snapping selfies in front of the C-SPAN logo at the back of the bus, C-SPAN representatives quickly took to demonstrating what the Mobile Bus had to offer. Activities included: demonstrations on C-SPAN's transition to a mobile platform, touch screen quizzes, and a close look at production equipment used to film C-SPAN programs.

Sara Zou, a C-SPAN marketing representative, wanted students to "learn more about C-SPAN and C-SPAN.org and recognize that it's a fantastic resource for students."

When asked about why the C-SPAN Mobile Bus chose to visit HBCUs, she said that, "a C-SPAN fan suggested it to us."

Students who stopped by welcomed C-SPAN's visit. Khayla Harris, a transfer student and journalism major from Baltimore, said, "I actually have seen C-SPAN before. I've been in the D.C. area, and I know that they record Congress.

"When I found that out, I had to come here to see it."

After an engaging discussion with Steve Devoney, a C-SPAN media specialist, Harris said she wanted other HBCU students to, "get the experience that I had and be able to talk to people who are professionals."

Demarius Newsome, a senior psychology major and leadership studies minor from Meadville, Pa., was quite taken with the interactive aspects of the bus. Newsome said, "outside of those who are journalism and political science majors, who always have to keep involved, C-SPAN is a good way for us to be involved with things that are going on."

Jeremy Trippett, a senior marketing major from Chicago, was just pleased to, "look and see HBCUs and see President Harvey and the exposure of Hampton University through C-SPAN." He also said that it was, "just good to bring that exposure to college students and black students at large."

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

Character, fiscal discipline define Hampton U., said president

By Taelor Bentley

William R. Harvey, EdD, president of Hampton University and Chairman of the President's Advisory Board on Historically Black Colleges and Universities, sat down and spoke with C-SPAN about the impact of HBCUs in our country and also about Hampton and what it has to offer. Harvey described Hampton as a wonderful institution that provides the very best education possible with the best and the brightest students.

"Hampton has always had the movers and shakers in this country associated with us," Harvey told interviewer Pedro Echevarria of Washington Journal. Financier and philanthropist John Rockefeller, inventor and philanthropist George Eastman, and engineer and politician Coleman DuPont were a few of the big names who have served on the board of trustees. Harvey took pride in saying that Hampton University is among the greatest and proves it as well by emphasizing character development, honesty and respect among all students.

Although this university only has 4,400 students, when asked if he was concerned about its size and longevity, Harvey made it clear that Hampton has chosen to have a small student body and could have many more students based upon the 19,000 applications it received for 1,000 openings the previous year.

When being interviewed for the position of the university president, Harvey said he told the board he planned to run Hampton University as a business for educational objectives. Since becoming president, Harvey has propelled the school from $29 million in endowment to $288 million. There is also a new $225-million proton therapy cancer treatment center that has treated over 1,000 patients.

"Our legacy is one of high quality," stated Harvey. He believes the character of Hamptonians is extremely important, having talked about it multiple times during the 38-minute interview.

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

C-SPAN to interview Hampton U. President William R. Harvey

By Malik Jones

HU President William H. Harvey Hampton University President William R. Harvey will be giving an interview to C-SPAN "Washington Journal" 8:15 a.m. Thursday where he is expected to discuss his views on education and why HBCUs are still relevant in today's ever-changing society.

The televised interview precedes a noon-to 2-p.m. visit of the C-SPAN bus HBCU tour.

Since assuming the position of president in 1978, Harvey has been the flagship force of Hampton University for over 36 years. His dynamic leadership, charisma, and relentless pursuit of progress and growth have earned him numerous accolades throughout his life and made him one of the country's most esteemed university presidents.

In 2010, the Daily Press awarded Harvey its coveted "Citizen of the Year Award" for his work in developing the Hampton University Proton Therapy Institute. This facility is working to aid in research and treatment for various cancers, specifically prostate cancer, which is prominent within the Hampton Roads community.

In 2013, Hampton University received a five-year, $13.5-million grant from the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities to begin a Minority Men's Health Initiative. This initiative is devoted to finding solutions to major health disparities plaguing minority males, specifically that of African-American men. Only through Harvey's service mentality and propensity to leadership could Hampton have secured such an important grant for such a worthy cause.

Harvey also serves at the pleasure of President Barack Obama as chair of his HBCU Advisory Board. Here, he works closely with other advisors and cabinet members to find solutions to the country's financial aid/student loan crisis.

Under his tenure as president, Harvey has trained 17 individuals who have gone on to become presidents of other universities. His most recent "graduate" was former Hampton Provost Pamela Hammond who is currently the first African-American female president of Virginia State University.

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

Hampton U. to screen BET series ‘The Book of Negroes’

By Mariah McClain and Alexandria Johnson

At 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 4, Hampton University will host a free screening of the upcoming BET miniseries "The Book of Negroes" in Ogden Hall. The screening will provide Hampton University students and Hampton Roads-area residents the opportunity to preview some of the six-part series that is set to begin airing on BET Feb. 16.

"The Book of Negroes," based on the award-winning 2007 book by Lawrence Hill, tells the story of an 11-year-old girl named Aminata Diallo who gets kidnapped from her West African village and is taken to the United States during the peak of the Mid-Atlantic slave trade.

Her character is played by actress Aunjanue Ellis. She has had reoccurring roles on "NCIS: Miami" and has also been seen on the big screen in "The Help," working side by side with Lryiq Bent and Cuba Gooding Jr.

"The Book of Negroes" gets its name from the historical document of the same name. The document contained the names of those 3,000 blacks who served the British king, allowing blacks who lived in Manhattan to settle in Nova Scotia, Canada during the American Revolutionary War. "The Book of Negroes" becomes Aminata's chance at freedom, and the story is centered on her involvement with the document, and her life thereafter.

Cuba Gooding Jr. told Anthony D'Alessandro of deadline.com, "It's told from the female perspective with a sense of empowerment. Through Amanita's journey we see the strength of her character. 'The Book of Negroes' is another upsetting moment for African Americans, when we have made a positive impact on the building of America, but our history hasn't been told. Hearing this tale of strength moved me."

This is not, however, the first time that Hampton University has hosted a free screening of a movie before its premiere. Many students may recall the free viewing of "12 Years a Slave" October 2013 in Ogden Hall. "12 Years a Slave" had a similar motif of slave narrative.

Many Hampton University students who did not attend last year's free screening of "12 Years a Slave" will have the opportunity to take advantage of the free screening this time around. Edwina Zoedua, a Pharmacy major from Prince George's County, Md., said, "Yes, I am actually really excited. I don't have any expectations, per say. I am keeping my mind open for new information and new perspectives."

Kayla Anderson, a psychology major from Bowie, Md., said, "Yeah, I'll probably go see it. I expect to see another story similar to '12 Years a Slave' and 'The Butler' about a black person being enslaved and trying to make it out of slavery."

Adam Downing, an accounting major from Baltimore, said, "If I can make it, sure. I'm really busy this week though. I would expect to learn some new things about newly freed slaves." Chaya Hairston, a pre-pharmacy major from Long Island, N.Y., said, "It seems like it will be just an interesting picture that depicts a part of our history that is not recognized and a chance to learn about our contributions in the war."

Tori Liggins, a cinema studies student, said, "I'm looking for a better understanding of African American history, and it's always fun to learn about my culture and the strength of my ancestors."

Hampton University through its partnership with BET Networks has the privilege of showing the first screening of a series that is engulfed in the sufferings of slavery but depicts the strength and power of African Americans to overcome it.

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

Katy Perry’s ‘Miss-tical Super Bowl Halftime Show

By Jelani Scott

On Sunday, the Super Bowl Halftime Show was both a "miss"-tical and mysterious performance that saw a number of interesting visuals put on display for the tens of thousands in the stadium and the millions watching at home.

Hampton University students piled into the Student Center Ballroom for a Super Bowl watch party, hosted by the Student Government Association. While it was clear that some people came for the food and football, others were cheering for something else other than the two teams trying to win a championship: Katy Perry.

The Grammy-nominated pop singer made her presence known immediately when she started singing her smash hit, "Roar," while riding a 10-foot-tall, robotic, golden tiger.

She then went onto sing a medley of songs that included other notable hits, "I Kissed a Girl," "California Gurls" and "Firework."

Perry's performance also included dancing chess pieces, palm trees and beach balls; and guest appearances by rock singer Lenny Kravitz and legendary MC Missy Elliott, who had previously been on hiatus.

Kaylah Hurst, a sophomore five-year MBA major from Richmond, Va., said, "I'm not the biggest Katy Perry fan. I do like some of her music, but the special effects, like for instance, her coming out on the lion; I didn't see it coming. I would've been scared to be on it.

"It was amazing. She took a lot of risks; I wouldn't have been the one to do it but it was great."

Aside from a select few that were enjoying the show, the energy in the room was rather stagnant, a fact that wasn't lost on some of the spectators. Khanner Hancock, a music education major from Woodbridge, Va., said that this drop in energy was caused in part by the fact that the audience in the room was predominantly young African-American adults, a demographic he believed didn't represent much of Perry's fan base: "I felt the halftime show grew over time. It started how I expected it to be, which wasn't that great. But it got better after Missy (Elliot).

"When Missy hit the stage, everyone paid attention again."

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

Super Bowl socializing on the Hampton U. campus

By Zhavi Harris, Donald Parker and Jacqueline Hill

Super Bowl XLIX was highly anticipated by numerous Hampton University students Sunday. There were multiple parties and social gatherings across campus.

The Student Government Association and Gamma Iota Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta party in the Student Center Ballroom provided food, nonalcoholic beverages and desserts for HU students and faculty.

After what some would describe as a dull first quarter of play and with food rapidly being devoured, it appeared that the Super Bowl commercials drew many people's attention.

The Fiat Viagra commercial and Kim Kardashian's T Mobile commercial seemed to get the biggest reaction from the crowd. Other commercials shared common themes: peace, happiness, unity and family. The crowd reaction was mixed.

Aaron Essex, a sophomore electrical engineering major from Compton, Calif., said the commercials were "awful and, honestly, I don't know what the producers were thinking when they made them."

However, Khalil Pierce, a junior biology major from Long Island, N.Y., said that the commercials were "well-timed given the events surrounding Ferguson, Paris and Syria."

Some people in the crowd were not intensely into the game. Freshman five-year MBA student Michael Eley of Raleigh, N.C., said that he could care less about the game and only came to socialize with his friends and do homework: "I guess I'm really only rooting for whoever is winning."

In the lobby of male athletics dorm Wilder Hall, students and sports fans munched on popcorn and stared wide eyed at the flat screen. Most of the students were rooting for the Seattle Seahawks. Dondre Jackson, a senior music major, said "If Russell Wilson brings Seattle to victory, then the Seahawks are definitely considered a dynasty."

Sophomore five-year MBA Alex Seals said the Seahawks had a great chance in winning the Super Bowl. He hoped, "that Seattle pulls through in the end, however, overall I'm just looking forward to watching a great game."

The atmosphere in Wilder Hall was filled with anticipation while the Seahawks and the Patriots were neck and neck for the first half of the game. The halftime score was a 14-14 tie.

Regardless of the results of the game [which ended in a 28-24 New England Patriots win] and how the commercials turned out, most people agreed that they had a great time at the party.

"I give props to the SGA for setting up this event," said Mya Reed, a freshman psychology major from Chesapeake, Va., "and I hope we can have another one next year,"

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

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