Social Media Play a Big Role in Establishing Careers

Students do not routinely think of social media as a means to build job resources, a UA career counseling professional said in an interview.

Rickey Lee Booker Jr., the director of UA Career Services doesn’t normally see students using social media to find jobs, he said.

“There are a lot of employers that are hiring students from LinkedIn, a lot more than in previous years. In previous years it was more of just a way to connect with people. It was kind of like a business card. You connect with them through that,” Booker said. “So, now it’s really changed because employers are on there so much that they’re actually seeking out students now based on their LinkedIn.”

The focus has since shifted to figuring out how to utilize social media in a positive way to lead students to their next career or internship opportunity.

“Keep in mind that there’s not one place or one solution. So, it’s really about diversifying your search. We try to get all of those on similar systems but it doesn’t always happen,” said Erica Estes, director of Employer Relations for Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences said.

“And in this case, if students put a little more time and effort into their profile they might add some extra experiences and update what their career interests are so that those kinds of jobs and events are pushed towards them.”

Gina Shelton, a UA journalism instructor and internship director, called on students to take the initiative.

“My best advice for students is to let your professors know what you’re interested in. Some employers want a personal recommendation – they are not interested in a wide-open ad.

“I encourage students to be very visible online. Have a Twitter account that shows you are engaged and active in the journalism/public relations world,” she said. “Create a LinkedIn account, with a professional headshot. The Career Center offers free photo sessions and assistance with LinkedIn and resumes.”

Among the resources that Estes said the university offers students is a program called Handshake. As an online career platform, students can use it to find jobs, internships or career events happening on campus.

“They can also reach out to other students who work for a company that they might be interested in and employers can also reach out to students if they click to make their profiles public. Employers can reach out to them if they think they fit certain qualifications. Any employer that is on handshake is able to reach out to 100 students at each institution once a semester. So, it’s not unlimited, they have to pick and choose.

“So, that’s why it’s important for students to make sure their profile is up to date and exhaustive because every UofA student has a handshake profile already,” Estes said. “Just because you’re a UofA student – just like you all have UAConnect access – it’s the same kind of thing.”

But Estes also has found it difficult to strike that perfect balance of just the right amount of social media.

“There are just so many opportunities, it’s really easy for things to get lost and I get that and I struggle with figuring out with the best way to message students and not crowd them out,” Estes said. “So, I try really hard not to send more than one email a week to people because I just don’t want to overdo it and have people just start deleting them.”

Shelton agreed.

“Students should be savvy in using it to their advantage, making sure their social media footprint is an asset,” she said.

Student preparation also plays a role in job hunting, Booker said.

“Students come to college to get a job but I find it strange that quite a few students don’t really focus on their career until it’s their senior year,” he said. “But if the main reason is to get a job at some point then there needs to be a little bit of a balance between academics, fun, extracurricular activities and focusing on your career at the same time. That’s what really helps you develop into a well-rounded person.”

UA Transit and Parking Officials Gather Feedback

UA Transit and Parking officials consider ridership data and passenger feedback when adjusting Razorback Transit routes.

Already this semester routes 17, 21 and 44 have been changed in response to customer feedback, said David Wilson, the communications director for UA Transit and Parking.

“Under-utilized routes are adjusted so that higher performing and more heavily utilized routes can be properly equipped with resources,” Adam Waddell, assistant director of UA Transit and Parking, said in a press release.

The goal is to place resources where they will help the most people, Wilson said.

Dnajh Baim, an international student who rides route 48, said Razorback Transit is convenient because she does not have a vehicle.

Cassandra Kisner, a Fayetteville resident who rides route 35, said the bus will be up to five minutes late on some days. Sometimes there is an accident that will delay the bus, but students will not know about it.

Although changes are made, they are not made quickly, Wilson said. Officials are careful and deliberate about modifications, because they want to be sure the solution to one problem does not create a problem somewhere else.

“They’re not going to adjust a route because of one person, but if one person says it, sometimes that means there may be others who have the same concern,” Wilson said. “So, over the course of a year, if you listen to all the complaints and questions, you get a good feel for the people who are needing something different.”

Students sometimes contact officials about buses passing their scheduled stop, Wilson said. It happens anytime of the year and it is usually because the bus already is full or operating behind schedule.

“The bus is deadheading to a set location to get back on schedule,” Wilson said, in an email. “If a bus passes passengers up due to it being behind schedule there should be another bus right behind it.”

Shaylee Wallace, a first-year graduate student who rides route 33, said her stop has never been skipped, but that passengers have been crowded and in one another’s personal space more so than necessary.

Wallace bought a parking pass, but could not find a parking space, she said. She began parking in a public lot and riding the bus to campus. It adds to commute time but it will save money eventually.

Some passengers wonder whether having smaller buses that run more frequently would help alleviate the crowding and time between stops.

 

The capacity on 40-foot buses is 72 passengers, and on 35-foot buses the capacity is 68 passengers, Wilson said, in an email.

The transit staff conducted a study to determine whether smaller buses would be more efficient than larger buses, according to the transit and parking 2017 annual report. Although the smaller buses are less expensive to purchase, their life cycle cost is significantly more than the larger buses, according to the report.

A new big bus costs about $430,000 after the university-required necessary changes are added, Wilson said. Those changes can include branding, radios and communications equipment, cameras and technology for counting passengers.

Officials want the buses to last for 12 to 15 years because they cost so much money, Wilson said. Some buses are bought each year so old buses can be rotated out, which makes the process more manageable in the budget.

Buses that are rotated out can be sold for someone else to use, but federal guidelines limit how a bus is transitioned into another role, Wilson said, in an email. It is possible that an older bus can be retrofitted to be part of Razorback Charters, but nothing has been officially done in that regard.

City Plan for Extensive Trail System Aims to Improve

 

The addition of the Niokaska Creek bike trail will add 3.31 miles to the Fayetteville bike trail system. Construction began this year and will end in late 2019, said Matt Mihalevich the City of Fayetteville trails coordinator.

The construction of this portion of the trail by Gulley Park has been in the works for 10 years and will include replacing and widening trails within the park. Construction will alternate between building the Niokaska Creek bike trail and the Gulley Park trails, Mihalevich said.

While the construction of the Niokaska Creek trail is a high priority, it was pushed back to construct trails that connect to Kessler Mountain park.

The Niokaska Creek trail is part of the transportation plan which was developed in 2003. The goal is to have a trail within a half-mile of every residence in Fayetteville. That will make trails more accessible to residents living nearby, Mihalevich said.

“It’s a pretty lofty goal but we’ve been actually making pretty great progress,” Mihalevich said.

The Niokaska Creek bike trail is a half mile from 4,000 residences, and contributes to that goal significantly, Mihalevich said.

Placing trails within a half mile of residences will encourage people to be more active and make the trails a five- to 10-minute walk from home, Mihalevich said.

People use the trails for exercise, recreational activities and to get around town. The trails cut down on traffic and reduces the environmental impact of exhaust emissions. Because the Fayetteville trail system is separated from the road, it gives people space to walk and ride, Mihalevich said.

“It’s really our goal to provide a comfortable place for people to walk or ride their bike,” Mihalevich said.

UAPD Officers Evict Homeless from University Property

By Grant Lancaster

The Razorback Reporter

 

UA Police officers have evicted approximately 20 people who were living in a homeless camp on undeveloped UA property at 19th Street and School Avenue.

Officers removed 20 people and arrested four; there were no reported injuries during the operation, UAPD Capt. Gary Crain said.

This decision came after multiple serious crimes on the property in the last year, said Mark Rushing, associate vice chancellor of University Relations.

Fifty-two reports of crimes or arrests on the property were filed in 2018. Those included assault, battery, theft, arson, rape and drug charges, according to the UAPD Daily Crime Log.

“A small faction of the camping community out there made it an unsafe environment,” Rushing said.

One person was arrested on charges of trespassing on the property and another was arrested on charges of trespassing and possessing drug paraphernalia, Crain said.

Officers arrested a third person on charges that included trespassing, possessing a controlled substance, possessing drug paraphernalia and carrying counterfeit currency. The fourth was arrested on charges of public intoxication and possession of a controlled substance.

UAPD officers arrived at the property at approximately 6 a.m. Sept. 6 and began removing people and their belongings from the property, Rushing said.

Washington County Sheriff’s Deputies provided a van that could be used if a large number of people were arrested, Crain said. Deputies also were prepared to take action if a crime occurred outside of UA property.

Many of the dislocated people went to the 7hills Homeless Center, directly across 19th Street from the encampment.

During an Aug. 7 meeting at 7hills, UA administrators asked those living on the land to leave by Sept. 6, Rushing said.

Workers from UA Facilities Management cleared trash and underbrush from the property over the next week, Rushing said. UAPD officers can patrol the area more easily, Crain said.

Mike Jersey, who lived on the property for the last six months, thinks that UAPD officers did not give the campers enough time to find new places to live and move their belongings, he said.

Many of the people living on the property have mental illnesses, substance addictions or past felonies, which makes finding a permanent place to live extremely hard, Jersey said.

“They just need a little help. We just need a place where we can get housed right now,” Jersey said.

The CEO for 7hills, Jessica Andrews, hopes that the relocation will draw attention to the problem of homelessness in Northwest Arkansas, she said.

Andrews thinks that UA officials were helpful during the relocation process, but it is always hard for so many people to find new safe places to live, she said.

UAPD officers will continue to patrol the property to ensure none of the people come back, Crain said.

RSO Cookout Turns Up the Heat on Cancer Debate

By Elizabeth Green

The Razorback Reporter

 

Free hotdogs and hamburgers cooked on a grill donated by the American Cancer Society quickly became a source of heated irony at a Registered Student Organization’s recent cookout.

The Razorback Relay for Life RSO hosted the cookout Sept. 10 to meet students and encourage them to get involved.

Senior Matt Campbell, a nutrition major, contacted the RSO after learning that the group would be joined by the American Cancer Society in handing out hamburgers and hotdogs at its event. In his email, Campbell said he urged the club “not to literally serve cancer.”

The International Agency for Research on Cancer released information from its evaluation of the carcinogenicity of the consumption of red meat and processed meat, according to a 2015 release by the World Health Organization. The agency classified the consumption of red meat as “probably carcinogenic to humans” while processed meat was classified as “carcinogenic to humans.”

“For an individual, the risk of developing colorectal cancer because of their consumption of processed meat remains small, but this risk increases with the amount of meat consumed,” Kurt Straif of the IARC said in the release.

After receiving no response, Campbell booked a table next to the RSO Monday and handed out copies of the IARC findings to encourage students not to consume red or processed meat.

“The WHO classified processed meat as a group one carcinogen; that’s the same group as asbestos exposure and cigarette smoking,” Campbell said. “The argument essentially is: if you wouldn’t hand out cigarettes, why would you hand out processed meat?”

Alie Bolling, the community development manager for the American Cancer Society, has a bachelor’s degree in human nutrition and a master’s in community health promotion.

“Red meat can be a carcinogen when consumed in excess, but if you’re eating it about three times a week maximum at regular sized servings of about three to four ounces, then there’s no health issues whatsoever,” Bolling said.

Junior Mackenzie Lancey helped represent the RSO at the cookout.

“Consuming anything in excess usually has a negative effect,” Lancey said. “We would hope that people would consume red meat responsibly and pay attention to research.”

The cookout also raised awareness for Relay for Life, an annual event honoring cancer survivors. The Razorback Relay for Life is scheduled for 8-11 p.m., Oct. 5 at the HPER.

Quizlet, GroupMe Make Cheating Efficient

By Samantha Van Dyke

The Razorback Reporter

 

Websites such as Quizlet, and apps including GroupMe are making it increasingly easier to cheat, according to the Office of Academic Initiatives and Integrity.

“Studies show that 65 to 85 percent of college students are self-reported cheaters,” said Hannah Johnson, the Administrative Analyst for the Office of Academic Initiatives and Integrity, referring to a study done by James M. Lang in 1993. “We only get somewhere between 400 to 600 cases a year, but the self-reported numbers are really high.”

One in three college students and two in three high school students use the site, which functions as a way for students to create virtual flashcards, according to the Quizlet website.

However, problems arise when students use Quizlet to upload test, quiz and even homework answers that can be pulled up on their computers while completing work online through Blackboard.

“It’s no secret that those answers are out there,” senior Sergio Romero said. “Often I will ask friends for help studying and they will tell me to just look up a Quizlet of all the answers.”

Quizlet isn’t the only way students share classified materials though. According to Johnson, the University of Arkansas sees a lot of academic misconduct through the messaging app GroupMe.

“We get about 70 cases a year of what is considered unauthorized material charges, and GroupMe is a big part of that,” Johnson said. “You can’t really control who is in these groups or what they put in there so we often have to print out books of GroupMe messages and determine who has shared the material, who has responded to it and who could have utilized it.”

As far as policing these sites, Johnson said often times professors and teaching assistants will embed themselves in these groups to see if and when material is being leaked.

Romero doesn’t use GroupMe or Quizlet to get access to unauthorized material, but he said he benefits greatly from these apps and websites.

“I think collaboration is the key to progress,” Romero said. “Having the ability to bounce ideas off of other classmates and hear the material presented in a different way that may make more sense has helped me be successful in my classes. At the end of the day though, you are paying for your classes and to cheat instead of trying to learn the material feels like a waste of money to me.”

As far as preventative measures go, Johnson said the university has initiatives in place to help students succeed and avoid academic dishonesty. These programs involve things like SafeAssign, an online system that scans papers for plagiarism before students turn them in, and a general outreach initiative that encourages a cultural change away from cheating.

“My best advice is to just remember that when you’re looking at unauthorized materials, you’re putting your faith that these answers are correct in somebody else,” Johnson said. “If you’re sharing test or quiz answers, oftentimes these are copywritten materials, which is a federal offense to distribute.”

Summer Camps Aim to Prepare, Recruit Architects

By Elizabeth Green

The Razorback Reporter

 

Nearly 100 high school students traveled to the UofA campus to attend the Fay Jones School Summer Design Camp, where they engaged in extensive hands-on projects geared toward encouraging careers in design.

Weeklong camps take place each summer in four cities across the state, from the Delta town of Wilson to the busy city of Fayetteville.

“Students will have the opportunity to work closely with faculty and collaborate with peers in a fun and creative studio environment while they walk with you through the design process,” according to the Fay Jones website.

Senior Andrew Wright was one of several teaching assistants at the Fayetteville Design Camp this summer.  

“My duties mainly included marketing the camp in schools and other educational facilities across Arkansas and preparing materials for the camps themselves,” Wright said.

The Fayetteville camp had two classes, one geared toward beginner architecture and design students, and another for more advanced students, Wright said. Design Camp I students worked to develop a pavilion that would be placed on the Old Main lawn, while Design Camp II students developed a proposal for a permanent farmer’s market pavilion behind Chipotle near the Fayetteville Greenway.

Josephine Boynton is a former Design Camp student; she is now a freshman in the Fay Jones School.

“Design Camp was what made me decide to come to University of Arkansas,” Boynton said. “It allowed me to fall in love with both Fayetteville and the Fay Jones School, and it’s also where I met some of my best friends and my roommate.”

As the camp continues to grow in popularity, it is being modified to draw more students’ interest.  

“The camp has made some major strides in the past few years and the success is discernible,” Wright said.  

These changes have included offering more challenging projects for advanced students, creating additional camp locations and even offering an overnight option at the UA campus.

This summer 145 students attended the camps, the largest number of campers in the program’s history. Ninety-eight students attended the Fayetteville camp, compared to 80 students last summer.

The 2019 Design Camp will have more changes after the record attendance this year; the Fayetteville camp will offer two weeklong sessions, and another camp will be added at a fifth location Alison Turner, the Director of Community Education and Clinical Assistant Professor of Architecture, said

“We are already planning for next summer and will add two more camps – a second camp in Fayetteville and a new camp in El Dorado,” Turner said.

Camps are located in Fayetteville, Hot Springs, Little Rock and Wilson, with Fayetteville being the only overnight camp.

Flu Shots Available at Pat Walker Health Center

By Kristen Phantazia Smith

The Razorback Reporter

 

Flu shots are now available for UA students, faculty and staff at the Pat Walker Health Center, officials said.

The start of the flu season can’t be officially pinned down to a specific date because of its unpredictability, but the sooner individuals can get flu shots the better, said Zac Brown, assistant director of communications for the Center. Flu season generally lasts through March.

Flu shots will aid in protecting students, but don’t guarantee a perfect bill of health, Brown said.

I say protected loosely,” he said. “It’s not a sure thing that if you get the shot you won’t get the flu, but it can help to reduce the severity and length of it.”

Walk-in clinics will be open from 3 to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Shots for insured individuals are covered in full by their health plan. This is true on campus, and if students, faculty or staff seek medical care off campus from a health-care and health services provider.

In the last two years the campus health center has seen fewer flu cases than in the previous year, Brown said.

Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to take their health into their own hands and not solely depend on the flu shot to keep them healthy. Health officials recommend that persons should avoid contact with sick people, cover their mouth and nose when they cough or sneeze and wash their hands and other surfaces often and effectively before touching their eyes, nose and mouth.

Student Housing Problem Is ‘Temporary’

By Katie Beth Nichols

The Razorback Reporter

 

Forty incoming UA freshmen came to the University of Arkansas without campus housing because of record freshman enrollment.

“There are currently 26 students in temporary living situations, but nine will be moved to permanent solutions this week,” said Christopher Spencer, assistant director for Marketing and Strategic Communications for University Housing.

“In general, oftentimes they really enjoy living in study rooms and petition to stay there,” Spencer said.

In the rare case of students living in temporary housing for the full year, they would not have to pay the same amount as a student living in a regular dorm room, Spencer said. For example, a Yocum Hall resident would pay $6,388 for a year, but $3,194 in temporary quarters.

This is a perennial problem because of record UA freshman enrollment since 2009. This fall, 60 fewer degree-seeking freshmen enrolled than the fall of 2017, but enrollment continues to hover around 5,000 students, making it difficult for the university to house all of them in addition to nearly 1,000 returning students who live on campus this year.

The U of A is getting new housing, the Stadium Drive Residence Halls. The dorms are projected to house 708 students and could have plenty of space for students to get acquainted with university life. The hall will accommodate students who have similar interests; they’ll reside in what officials call a living-learning community. Recording studios, project spaces and other amenities are perfectly suited for disciplines such as architecture, art, theater, music and computer programming.

In addition to the community aspect of the hall, the Stadium Drive Residence Halls are being built using a process called cross-laminated timber, a more sustainable option than the customary materials used to build similar residence halls such as concrete and steel.

“We just don’t see that sort of material on large buildings,” Spencer said. “This is new for Arkansas and new for the United States.”

With the building of the Stadium Drive Residence Halls, two of the older housing options, Buchanan-Droke and Gladson-Ripley will be closed. These two halls house a total of 202 students, creating a net-gain of 506 beds when the Stadium Drive Residence Halls open in the fall of 2019.

Freshman Allen Amuimuia is one of the male students in a temporary living situation at the university. Amuimuia lives with two other roommates in a room that is normally a study room in Humphreys Hall.

“I was originally going to the Air Force Academy for football, but after two weeks there I decided to transfer back down here,” Amuiamuia said. “I guess because I came so late I got pushed to the bottom of the housing list.”

When Amuimuia arrived to move in, he was informed that he would not be living in a traditional room. He said that he has not experienced many issues with living in the study rooms.

“The only thing is I don’t know when I’m going to be moved into somewhere permanent. It’s all just a waiting game,” Amuimuia said.