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.