Daily Archives: October 25, 2015

Mr. and Ms. UWF announced at men’s soccer

HC-MrMsUWF2

Ryan Kasemeyer, Mr. UWF (left), and Marissa Frangione, Ms. UWF (right).
Photo courtesy of UWF Homecoming.

Iqueena Hollis

Staff Writer

Homecoming 2015 festivities were capped off with the announcement of the new Mr. and Ms, UWF during halftime of the men’s soccer game on Friday.

Ryan Kasemeyer, a member of Sigma Chi fraternity, was crowned Mr. UWF. Marissa Frangione, a member of Alpha Gamma Delta and president of Panhellenic was crowned Ms. UWF.

“I’m so honored to have been chosen to represent UWF as Ms. UWF and can’t wait for this year ahead to make the most of this opportunity,” said Frangione. “I will use my position to help fellow students learn how to make the most out of their college experience.”

The homecoming court was determined by the votes of students and the decision of the homecoming committee.

The men’s soccer team was defeated by Delta State University with an ending score of 2-1, despite outshooting their opponents. The team is 8-5 for the season, with a 2-5 Gulf South Conference record.

The women’s soccer team, which played Delta State before the men’s game, won its game with a final score of 5-0 and shut Delta State out of the GSC Women’s Soccer Championship Tournament. The team’s overall record is now 10-4, and 6-3 in the Gulf South Conference.

To view complete stats of the games and information on future games, visit GoArgos.com.

Traveling to Mars, the challenges we face and proposed solutions

curiostiy

Curiosity, the Mars rover.
Photo courtesy of nasa.gov.

Tom Moore

Contributing Writer

It has been all over the news, from TV to radio, and all over social media. “NASA set to explore Mars!” “The Curiosity Rover lands on Mars.” “Curiosity’s Twitter feed reaches 1 million followers.” “NASA plans manned mission to Mars by 2032.”

What was maybe not so readily advertised about the trip to Mars is that it took Curiosity eight months just to get there.

“Star Trek” makes it look easy. With 24th century technology, matter/antimatter exchanges, warp nacelles, artificial gravity and inertial dampeners, the USS Enterprise flits from one end of the galaxy to the other and boasts all the comforts of having never left Earth. But since we live in the early 21st century, not the 24th, what will it take to survive an eight-month trip from Earth to Mars?

There are four major problems that have to be overcome to traverse the 50 million miles between Earth and Mars:

Challenge No. 1: Ambient Radiation. The Earth’s atmosphere provides a natural shield that blocks all kinds of nasty particles and rays that wreak havoc on human anatomy. To protect human’s vital organs, any deep space vessel must have shielding from radiation. Unfortunately, shielding means extra weight, and extra weight means a lot of extra fuel.

Challenge No. 2: Decalcification of bones because of extended period in zero gravity.

Challenge No. 3: The atrophy of skeletal muscles due to extended periods of exposure to zero gravity.

Challenge No. 4: Recent missions on the International Space Station have shown that some astronauts actually suffer brain damage, similar to that of oxygen deprivation due to extended periods of weightlessness.

The Solutions

The traditional solution, and one that has been assumed since the first trip to Mars was proposed, is to engineer the environment of the spacecraft and habitat to simulate earth as closely as humanly possible.

But what if this is the wrong approach? This is the question proposed by Robert Hoffman of the Institute for Human and Machine Cognition. “What if instead, we engineer human biology to withstand at least some of the harshness of space travel itself rather than relying completely on the ships life support to work for us?”

Further research into this idea led Hoffman and his team Jeff Bradshaw, Patrick Hayes, and Kenneth Ford to develop “The Borg Hypothesis”: According to this study, “long duration, deep space missions will not be successful unless and until human biological evolution is forced.”

What Hoffman was proposing was to implant much of the hardware and electronics needed for a Long Duration Mission (LDM) directly into the body of the astronaut. That way, the fail-safes for the astronauts’ survival could be within themselves, so they would not have to rely so heavily on the ship’s systems.

Let’s call these “enhanced” astronauts “specialists.” If humans are to survive an eight-month mission through deep space to Mars, we must engineer our bodies to be more hardened and machine-like than they are currently. The creation of specialists for missions such as these will be an extremely intense and expensive undertaking. Our specialists could be engineered to withstand radiation through the hyper pigmentation of the skin and implanting special glands that contain nanites to shield their vital organs. Thus a ship crewed by these specialists would no longer need to worry about heavy radiation shielding. The mission could thus save money on shielding weight and extra fuel costs.

By replacing or enhancing the skeletal bones and muscles, the problem of bone decalcification and muscle atrophy could be solved.

The final enhancement could be the direct interface between the specialists’ brains and the ship’s computer. Thus a pilot could tap directly into the ship’s external sensors to get a “ship’s-eye” view of the immediate vicinity of the space where the ship is traveling.

If we start work now, by the time the design, building and fitting of the ship has been completed, a crew of specialists could be engineered to take on the challenge of our first inter-system flight to Mars by 2035.

Homecoming pep rally highlights university teams, Dan + Shay

Emily Doyle

Staff Writer

The Homecoming pep rally and concert featuring Country Music Awards-nominated artists Dan + Shay on Thursday allowed students to get into an “Argo state of mind.”

With a professional disc jockey, blue and green glitter guys walking around the Cannon Green and students throwing blue and green glow sticks into the crowd, the pep rally got students excited to support their various sporting teams. From the women’s swim team to men’s cross-country to the 2016 inaugural football team, all sports were celebrated during the Homecoming pep rally.

Student Christian Hogue, a junior, said, “I thought it was really neat that they went through all of the sports teams instead of focusing just on our football team. Not a lot of colleges do that, and knowing we do made me proud to be an Argo.”

The homecoming court was introduced as well. Court member Adelyn Benz said, “I am so honored to experience Homecoming this year by serving in court. The concert and pep rally were an amazing time for me. I can’t wait to see what UWF has in store for next year.”

After everyone was pepped up, Dan + Shay put on a well-received show. Dan + Shay is one of the fastest up-and-coming country artists of the year, already having multiple CMA nominations. So it’s not hard to see why UWF students were very excited to have them play for Homecoming.

“Dan + Shay’s performance was amazing and was a ton of fun,” said junior Ashley Williams. “I ended up knowing a lot more of their songs than I thought I did, but it was nice having a country artist for a change. UWF Homecoming did an amazing job planning everything out for this year.”

Dan + Shay didn’t limit themselves to only their songs, though; they also covered songs from artists Boyz II Men, Taylor Swift and many others. This provided an eclectic mix of music that not only complemented the positive vibe but also appealed to students whose first preference of music genre is not country.

Many students agreed that UWF Homecoming was successful at providing an event that all students could feel comfortable attending. Hogue said, “I usually don’t go to UWF events, because I feel as if it they only have mainly sororities and fraternities participating. But I was happy to discover that there was a diverse student participation at this Homecoming event.”

Concealed carry on college campuses

Tristan Lawson

Staff Writer

There have been 305 mass shootings documented in the United States in 2015.

Much of the attention has been focused on high-profile incidents that have occured on college campuses and public schools. Most recently, the shootings at Umpqua Community College, in Oregon resulted in 10 fatalities.

The question of how to address the crisis transcends political, social and cultural lines. Some people argue that a shift in policy and laws regarding gun control is long overdue, others believe that more guns will make us safer, and some that say there is nothing that can be done.

In the case of college campuses, some states are endorsing the “only a good guy with a gun can stop a bad guy with a gun” philosophy and are relaxing restrictions on concealed carry on college campuses.

In Texas, students and teachers are now allowed to carry concealed weapons on campus, and even in class. This change in policy has resulted in some strong and provocative reaction from student bodies, as well as teachers.

A similar policy change in Idaho resulted in some unforeseen consequences, in which a professor accidentally shot himself.

In Florida, there have been no such changes to date. The University of West Florida’s existing policy remains the same. However, campus police are training teachers and some student groups on how to deal with an active shooter. This preemptive training is designed to teach people how to respond in these situations and how to minimize casualties and prevent collateral damage.

The UWF police website has posted a video that details what to do if there are shots fired on campus.

With these incidents on the rise, some might ask if there will be an increased police presence on campus.

“I do not anticipate any changes to the current security and police presence at UWF,” UWF police officer Kyle Gallagher said, via email. “Chief John Warren is doing a great job with our limited department resources. We have a very good response system in place with our current security and police presence on UWF main campus.

“All of our officers can be anywhere on campus within two minutes or less. We are on constant alert and patrol.  It’s what we are trained to do.”

“In the event we need additional assistance, we have a mutual aid agreement with the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office,” Gallagher said.

“Furthermore, our duty is getting the word out immediately to the campus community in the event of an active shooter incident. We do this via the Safety Alerts and Notices, UWF Notification System, UWF Emergency Webs, and shelter-in-place protocol.”

Some say that this is not a gun control issue but, rather, a mental health one.

“As the public discussion shifts towards discussing this as a mental health issue, I am concerned about the stigma that comes along with that,” Ross Ginkel, a psychologist in UWF’s Counseling and Wellness department, said.

In the Resolution on Firearm Violence and Prevention, The American Psychological Association stated that only 3 to 5 percent of people with mental illness are attributable for risk of violence. The resolution also stated that the vast majority of people with mental illness are more likely to be victims of violent crime rather than the perpetrators.

Mass shootings carried out by someone with a mental illness are rare, though media focus may contribute to the impression that this is not the case.

While it may give some relief to know that the University is preparing for what we hope will never happen, these incidents are unpredictable, and Gallagher says awareness and communication are the key to survival and saving lives.

“I recommend programming our department number in your cell phone,” he said. “This way you can keep it on speed dial if you are walking alone at night. There are also emergency blue lights located throughout campus. They are located in every parking lot, service road, near stairwells, and walkways, including near the Nature Trail. In fact, we are installing three more soon.”

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Bernie Sanders shouldn’t need to explain Democratic Socialism to Americans

Josh Hart

Staff Writer

On Oct. 22, CNN reported that Bernie Sanders is poised to take the stage to “address the stigma” surrounding Sanders’ use of the term “Democratic Socialist” to describe his political ideology. Tad Devine, Sanders’ strategist, said this tactic was meant to “reassure voters” that Sanders is, indeed, capable of winning the election.

The fact that this is necessary is a prime example of the remarkable political hegemony of American culture, the simple refusal of the American people to engage with any political idea beyond the two-party binary.

There’s no doubt that Americans are capable of doing so. Americans are reading more than ever and, with social media, political discourse is a constant presence in people’s lives.

Yet, when it comes to deviating from discourse, Americans are, well, shy.

Despite the fact that most Americans agree with a socialist disbursement of wealth, few know what socialism means.

A recent poll by New Hampshire Democrats by WBUR showed that 48 percent said they would accept a socialist president. Some 36 percent said it would be completely unacceptable.

The fact that Sanders is running as a Democrat at all shows exactly how stratified American politics has become. There are several other parties that are more in line with his views. Yet, as we all know, the chances of any candidate winning under a third party are slim to none. Politicians are collected into the two-party system even if they don’t belong.

What American politics needs is openness amongst politicians and respect for constituents.  It needs openness about ideology and the way individuals turn away from two-party rhetoric. It also needs respect for constituents to be able to understand different ideologies.

If Americans want this respect, however, we should be willing to at least attempt to consume an ideology that varies from two-party hegemony. Needing a public event to explain what Democratic Socialism means isn’t cutting it.

 

UWF athletics weekly roundup

Cassie Rhame

Staff Writer

Men’s Soccer

The University of West Florida men’s soccer team started the week with a loss on Sunday, Oct. 18, on the road against the University of West Alabama.

The Argonauts held their own, and were “able to keep West Alabama off the scoreboard until an 86th minute goal helped Tigers secure victory,” according to a UWF Athletic Communication’s press release.

UWA attempted more shots, 13-7, than the Argonauts. Junior goalkeeper Andre Moreira held his opponents scoreless until the Tiger’s game-winner, which resulted in a 1-0 West Alabama win.

The team suffered its second loss of the week in overtime on Friday, Oct. 23, against Delta State University, 2-1. The loss came despite an aggressive UWF offense.  The Argos outshot DSU 27-11.

The Argos are now 8-5 on the season, and 2-5 in Gulf South Conference play.

UWF senior Jorge Chirinos led both games in shots.

UWF men’s soccer will play their last home game at 12:30 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 25, with a GSC matchup against Mississippi College.

 

Women’s Soccer

The UWF women’s soccer team also fell in the ranks with a 1-0 loss at the University of West Alabama on Sunday, Oct. 18. The Lady Argos rebounded with a win at Friday’s homecoming game when they conquered DSU 5-0.

Defense dominated the UWA contest and held both teams to below average shot totals.

“UWF still boasts the best team goals against average in the GSC at 0.77,” according to a UWF Athletic Communication’s press release.

UWF scored three first-half goals against DSU, the best opening half performance of the season. Sophomore Daryl Bell scored the first goal, her eighth of the season.

UWF is now 10-4 on the season, and 6-3 within the Gulf South Conference.

 

Volleyball

UWF volleyball started and ended strong with its busy schedule this week, but were ultimately dropped to No. 20 in the national rankings following the team’s first GSC loss of the season.

The team started the week with an unchallenged victory against the University of West Georgia 3-0.

The Lady Argos recorded their first conference defeat of 2015 in a 3-2 loss at the hands of Valdosta State University on Tuesday, Oct. 20.  The team had been 11-0 in GSC play.

The match was a heated one as the two teams were tied 12 times and exchanged the lead five times in the third set, according to a UWF Athletic Communication’s press release.

Sophomore Monique StCyr stood out in both games.  She recorded 12 kills in the VSU loss.

Sophomore Tori Martella remained in the GSC spotlight with 69 digs in four matches. Martella is only the seventh player in UWF history to do so, according to a Gulf State Conference press release.

The Lady Argonauts fought back as they won the match against UWA on Saturday, 3-0. The win improved UWF’s GSC record to 12-1.

The Lady Argos have two GSC home matches this week.  They meet Shorter University on Friday, Oct. 30, and Lee University on Saturday, Oct. 31.

 

Women’s golf

The University of West Florida women’s golf team finished the first day of the Saint Leo Invitational in fourth place on Monday, Oct. 19,  and finished in third with a strong second-day performance on Tuesday.  

The result was UWF’s third top-five finish in the fall season, according to a UWF Athletic Communication’s press release.

Star player and two-time All-American senior Elin Olsson once again stood out. Olsson’s Argos’ best was good for a fifth-place tie at the tournament.

Women’s golf will start again in spring on Feb. 7 for the Flagler College organized World Gold Invitational.

 

Swimming and diving

West Florida women’s swimming and diving team found itself at a striking ranking of No. 10 for Division II on the CollegeSwimming.com poll on Tuesday after its first weekend of competition.

UWF scores have improved by .3 percent overall.

Sophomore Madeline Pitt received the New South Intercollegiate Swim Conference Swimmer of the Week award, and junior diver Monica Amaral was named NSISC Diver of the Week, according to CollegeSwimming.com.

The women’s swimming and diving team will travel to Sewanee, Tennessee for the Sewanee Invitational on Oct. 30 and Oct. 31.

UWF football continues to improve

Football Pic

Freshman quarterback Gunnar Ballant waits for the snap from the center during Saturday’s scrimmage.
Photo by Grier Wellborn.

Grier Wellborn

Contributing Writer

The University of West Florida football team played its fourth scrimmage of the season on Saturday, Oct. 24, at University Park Field as part of Homecoming 2015.

It was the first time the team has played back-to-back weekends.

Head coach Pete Shinnick said he knew that a back-to-back schedule would be tough on the players, but also wanted to help prepare them for next season when they will play 11 weeks in a row.

“I knew this would be hard to go back-to-back,” Shinnick said. “I knew it would be hard to create the same energy and excitement.

“But kind of like I told the team at the end, ‘hey, this is next year, this is every week,’ and that’s where they have to understand the maturity level that it takes, the expectation of what we have for them, and what we’re looking for.”

Shinnick said he gets a better sense of who can play at a higher level by examining who gives the same effort every week and who can grow with the team.

The offense was less productive than the prior scrimmage and may have been slightly worn out from last week’s game at Maritime Park Stadium. The defense was effective and proved that they are capable of shutting down the offense with great body and ball coverage.

Freshman linebacker Andre Duncombe was cheered in the post-game team huddle for his outstanding run and pass protection.

As for the offense, the position of starting quarterback remains open. Freshman quarterback Mike Beaudry was unable to play in Saturday’s scrimmage because of an injury to his elbow during the week. With Beaudry resting on the sidelines, freshmen quarterbacks Gunnar Ballant and Grey Jackson gained playing time.

Jackson has been sporting a red jersey on the field, indicating to other players to avoid physical contact with him. Jackson currently is recovering from an injury to his collarbone, which he sustained before the start of football camp. After being out for the entire month of August, and part of September, coaches have been easing Jackson back into games and working on his arm strength, which they say has been improving every week.

Shinnick said he has high expectations of Jackson, calling him the most elusive quarterback they have. Both Shinnick and Jackson say they believe that Jackson’s potential as quarterback outweighs his current stats on the field.

“I can’t be as aggressive,” Jackson said. “I have to be more of a pocket-style passer, and that’s not really what I do. Being able to run and make plays is a big part of what I do, and once the strength comes back in my arm, I’ll have a lot more confidence in my throws.”

Coaches said they hope Jackson recovers fully by the start of spring training to exhibit his full potential on the field.

The UWF Football team will conclude its 2015 intrasquad scrimmage schedule on Saturday, Nov. 7, at University Park Field.

For more UWF football news and schedules, visit goargos.com.