Boys Don’t Cry: Why we should be talking about mental health with Black men

By Tahshea LaBrew

It is no secret that life is rough for Black men and for people who suffer from mental illness.

The intersection of mental illness and the black man was the theme of the stage production "Boys Don't Cry" written and directed by Timea Whitsley and Brooklyn Baker, sponsored by The Greer Dawson Student Leadership Program.

There are four main characters and each is a young, black, male, college student going through their own unique problems regarding mental health.

Writer and director Brooklyn Baker gave feedback on the subject of the play in the student center theatre. "The reason why there are four main characters is so that it could represent four different types of men. At Hampton University the ratio is 12 women to 1 guy so we really wanted to touch on a subject that would really just resonate with black men specifically. So we really wanted to touch on mental health in the black community. A lot of black men told me that it resonated with them."

Erlanger A. Turner, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Psychology at the University of Houston-Downtown shared information on this subject. "In the wake of increasing injustice related to police aggression and brutality there is growing concern about the impact of these events on mental health. A study published in the American Journal of Public Health noted that those who reported more police contact experienced more symptoms of anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder. However, few Black men seek mental health care. Black men may avoid seeking mental health treatment due to stigma, mistrust of providers, or lack of culturally-informed care."

Because most students at Hampton University, where the play was performed, are women, many events, panel discussions, and campaigns are geared towards women's issues. The campus doesn't have many events regarding black men and their struggles however, this event was an exception. Despite how noisy the environment was, one junior mathematics major spoke about his experience with mental health after the positively received stage production.

"I've struggled with depression for most of my life. It's a lot to talk about honestly," he said "There's always this kind of air of cowardice that's shoved on men with depression or suicidal thoughts. Like you aren't brave or strong if you think about taking your own life. It's never made sense or been helpful to me."

"In general, men in society are taught to be very emotionless, especially with each other. You're seen as weak or gay or feminine otherwise. As a result, I don't trust 90% of people with my thoughts or emotions. People don't understand me or seem to care too much to try so I stopped trying years ago."

The student's statement described hypermasculinity.

According to Britannica.com, Hypermasculinity is a "sociological term denoting exaggerated forms of masculinity, virility, and physicality."

According to strengths and weaknesses of the young Black men, masculinities, and mental health (YBMen) Facebook project, An initial exploration of what 'mental health' means to young black men, Journal of Men's Health and Gender and Huffingtonpost. "Studies show that Black men often are socialized or grow up in homes where masculinity is emphasized and men are not encouraged to talk about their feelings or emotions."

"Research shows that African Americans often under-utilize therapy compared to White counterparts. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, 18.6% of African Americans report living with a mental health condition but only 16.9% report using mental health treatment."

Having a mental illness has a negative connotation. More black men should seek help and not just ignore it and refuse to address or even acknowledge it. The play "Boys Don't Cry" opened a discussion that should not end soon.

WHOV: The Hidden Gem of Hampton University

By James Philip JAC 210

Many Hampton University students seeking to pursue a career in media and entertainment are not aware of a broadcast opportunity right under their nose, WHOV Radio. Although the jazz music is extremely popular in the community, students in the Scripps Howard School of Journalism do not like it, and the school does not do a good job of promoting it.

WHOV Radio offers students at the Scripps Howard School of Journalism the chance to improve their skills in broadcast and production. For those who discover this hidden gem, bold career goals can be met.

"My ultimate goal, I want to become a station manager and run a station myself," Freshman Jabari Resper said.

Smooth 88.1 WHOV-FM broadcasts to the Hampton Roads and Norfolk areas in Virginia. The station runs continuously for 24 hours a day, year round.

Hosting three main formats of music, with several successful and critically acclaimed talk shows. An incredible selection of jazz, gospel, and R&B are permanently played. With a diverse appeal to the Hispanic community, WHOV plays a Hispanic Sounds program over the weekend that is in first place with fans of Latin American music listening in Hampton Roads.

The station does live coverage of the Hampton University football games, and women and men's basketball games, all the way into the playoffs. These live games are broadcasted across the country.

WHOV is a nationally ranked radio station that's directly linked to Scripps Howard. The station has an influence that stretches far around the Hampton communication students' immediate vicinity. It also fits inside the mold of what many students expect their time at Scripps Howard to include.

"To network, hook up with people, and collaborate in any way possible because it's really an advantage to be in a place with so many black creatives," said fourth-year journalism major Mariah Mingoes.

Hampton students often don't know about the career goals, broadcasting opportunities, and internships.

While meeting with WHOV employees, the Station Director Mr. Lang addressed the way students feel about the current format. That Hip Hop and R&B radio stations represent the majority of today's Urban America and receive the highest coverage.

"Many of the students in the University do not like the jazz and gospel music that is always playing," Lang said. "When students hear that their favorite genres of music are not in circulation, they immediately become disinterested."

Mr. Lang understands the student's concerns, and still believes the radio station has a lot to offer, even without the music of their choice. There is a disconnect between WHOV and the number of students at the university encouraged to explore creative opportunities, but limit themselves by not advancing toward the most obvious media outlet. The average Hampton student would be made to work around music they do not enjoy. By avoiding WHOV, they avoid this dilemma and the potential for career elevation.

"I don't really know what goes on in the radio station. It sucks that we have a radio station on this campus and it's not being used to its full capacity," Mingoes said There is no promotion for the station by the teachers, or the school. A class that involved students going to the radio station and practicing their recording was cancelled at the end of the 2017 school year. Students would need to do their own research if they were interested in the station. Inside of the Scripps building there aren't any fliers promoting the WHOV radio station, any of the opportunities, or any of the events they are involved in.

WHOV played an active part in the university's high school day. Although broadcast occurs throughout the Hampton Roads and Norfolk areas, the message for media benefits does not reach students.

Operations and Program Director of WHOV Radio Kevin "Moose" Anderson said, "For those who commit to the station it provides you with some skills that you can take out into the professional world and succeed." Students who enter through the halls of WHOV leave with a firm professional mindset, not only that but also, "We can provide you with the skills to hold your own, and a broadcast facility or any kind of media situation."

Students who become connected to the station are given the resources to branch off into every radio station affiliated with WHOV. The Station Manager, Mr. Lang, and the Program Director, Mr. Anderson, give students the broadcasting skills to carry with them into a professional radio setting.

For Scripps students seeking jobs in radio, stations will be more welcoming to the ones who are extra prepared when they walk in. Students gain experience in speaking professionally, production, recording, and submitting scripted newscasts, weekly and on a deadline. The media industry is difficult to navigate, and the more a person knows how to do, the more valuable they are in the industry.

Many hours of sweat and button pushing as a producer is sometimes rewarded with placement at another station or media center. Treating the station as a hidden gem that only a few students are aware exists, Jabari Resper, has succeeded early in discovering the potential of WHOV. "Its helping me learn how to run a station and learn everything that goes on behind the scenes that people don't normally see." Resper said

"As far as securing internships. Mr. Lang and I can place students in certain positions, but it's not for everybody." Anderson said, Anderson helps students get jobs when he believes the student has met enough of the station standards, and can encounter the constantly changing world of communications with the highest possible understanding.

Mr. Anderson and Mr. Lang have built connections, resulting from years of being in the broadcast industry. When asked by a capable student, who has procured many working hours, these two are willing to extend a hand in procuring an internship opportunity for students. A recommendation from either of these men will carry weight in an interview or radio job. The doors open for students working at the station. They have the chance to intern for other stations in D.C., Virginia, New York, Atlanta, and many other states in the country.

"If you're going to get an internship at a broadcast facility you need to take some experience with you." Anderson said "One thing I do a lot is I help broadcast the games that we have on campus from the press box to the station and then out to the people." Resper said Not wasting any time on his approach into the industry, Resper does many jobs around the station.

"I help make the newscasts that come on at 5:55(pm) every day and I help to work on spots and commercials that need to be made." He said By working hard and putting in the effort within an already established and well-promoted radio station, his vision for the future becomes clearer.

Student workers have many broadcasting opportunities while apart of WHOV. While there, students learn to operate nearly every behind the scenes aspect of a radio station. During the business week, students are allowed to shadow the live talk shows held at the station. Regularly scheduled newscasts are broadcasted to the Hampton Roads and Norfolk areas. Lastly, students have full access to the production boards.

For Jabari Resper, The WHOV Radio Station is not his end goal, but only a temporary platform he chooses to use in order to further his media aspirations. "You kids from the 90's don't know. This is WHOV, you can do it all here son!" Anderson said.

Hampton College Basketball Players want to get paid

By Harrington Gardiner

During last month's March madness tournament, student athletes entertained millions of students who were amazed by incredible athleticism. The students brought national recognition to Villanova and Michigan and brought considerable proceeds pouring into multiple television networks. What fans often don't realize is that the players aren't getting paid. No matter how big the school here at Hampton University the student athletes strongly believe that they should be getting paid. They argue that the sacrifices on and off the court, the financial need, and the money they bring into the university is enough for them to get paid.

This year's Hampton basketball team did not reach the NCAA March madness tournament and were unable to highlight their talents, but players were not shy of sharing their opinion on compensation.

"These players certainly deserve it for their hard work," said Hampton men's basketball coach Edward Maynor Jr.

School's get a profit and generate revenue every single year off the hard work of athletes but the ones who are putting in the work and scoring the points don't receive a dime. Though most college athletes are on full scholarship, they still have the daily responsibilities of regular college students. Sophomore guard Jermaine Marrow said that college athletes should get paid not only for what they do on the court but, what they do off the court because it takes away from their free time.

"I think it's important for us as players because we have so many duties off the court and sometimes basketball can prevent us from that. It's more than just playing games we have to recover and study, which takes away from our free time," Marrow said.

Hampton collegiate players discuss the responsibilities along with having practice, film study, and games every week. For them it's an uphill battle and compensation is a concern especially with the amount of revenue universities generate.

It's especially challenging for students here at Hampton that come from inadequate financial backgrounds and can't afford certain things. Student athletes put blood, sweat, and tears to work hard for the university's pride and recognition, and they feel it should be fair for college athletes to get paid rather than just being work horses for nonprofit.

Kalin Fisher who is a junior guard talked about the possibility of compensation and the passion that comes with playing college basketball. "It's tough balancing everything and hopefully there will be a solution in the future but as of right now, it's our passion to play and some of us are playing here for free as opposed to paying to attend school," Fisher said.

Coaches around the country that play for collegiate basketball schools get paid exceptional amounts of money and depending on the schools play, they get recognized and that brings in more money for the school.

Hampton Men's head basketball coach Edward Maynor, Jr. discussed the efforts of coaches and players. Maynor believes that players should get paid and share the proceeds equally.

HU celebrates Founder for setting and executing the standard of excellence on Founding Day.

Taylor Harris JAC 210 Story 2

HAMPTON, Va. -- On an outdoor stage, a half of a dozen doves sat in a closed wooden crate on Easter Sunday. The doves were not visible, but the audience knew they were somewhere near. First, two doves flew out of the crate, then the rest flew out in different directions, white against the blue sky. The audience watched until they disappeared, and soon after gave a standing ovation. This ceremony was fitting for the occasion of Easter Sunday.

Hampton University President Dr. William Harvey made a memorable tribute to Hampton University's founder General Samuel Chapman Armstrong on Founding Day. The Easter Sunday service commemorated Armstrong for setting the standard of excellence 150 years ago by opening the doors of Hampton Normal & Agricultural Institute on April 1, 1868, which stands today as Hampton University.

This celebration took place at Hampton University's historic Ogden Hall and concluded with a dove release ceremony which was a symbol of adoration for Dr. William R. Harvey's 40 years of leadership and the celebration of 150 years of Hampton University's existence.

"Without the resurrection of Jesus celebrated each Easter Sunday, Hampton University would not be what it is today. Armstrong needed the strength he drew from Jesus' resurrection to persevere and follow his vision to found the school. Dr. Harvey would not have survived the challenges he faced as president for 40 years and overcome the obstacles in his and the university's way without the power of the resurrection," said Dr. Michael Battle during his speech.

Dr. Harvey invited Dr. Battle to be the ceremony's distinguished guest speaker. Dr. Battle is the provost and executive vice president of the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in Cincinnati, Ohio. He served as Hampton University's former chaplain for 20 years. Dr. Battle made a tribute to General Armstrong in his sermon that tied together the three events that happened on this important day.

Dr. Harvey expressed the gratitude he has for Gen. Armstrong for giving African Americans an opportunity to get an education. His vision was to train selected African American youth to go out and teach and lead their people by being an example to the African American community. Armstrong wanted to build skilled and educated individuals, but he also made it clear that he wanted to build character.

"There were two things he wanted people associated with his institution to possess which are strong academics and good character. Of the two, General Armstrong thought character was more important. These things were not only important in 1868, but in 2018 they may be even more important.

I want Hampton University faculty staff, students and alumni to emulate General Armstrong's wishes and demonstrate honesty, integrity, responsible behavior and trust in their personal and professional lives," Dr. Harvey said.

Students enjoyed the program because they got a better understanding of the founder and why Hampton University stresses the two principles of strong academics and good character.

"I enjoyed learning about General Armstrong on a personal level," said Hampton University student Megan Napier. "Now, I have a great understanding of why this university stresses the importance of providing great academics and building students' characters."

Student leaders expressed gratitude towards President William R. Harvey for continuing founder General Samuel Armstrong's legacy.

"President Harvey has done a wonderful job of carrying the torch and continuing to exemplify the standard of excellence that General Armstrong set on April 1st, 1868," said Student Government Association President Martha Baye. "Jared Bourke, Student Government Association vice president, and I wanted to release doves on behalf of SGA to represent 40 years of outstanding service and the commitment to always give back and return home."