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Spring Break 2013: HindsCC Honors Institute Across the Pond

 

Hey guys!

I trust that everyone is gearing up for the end of the semester! Students are being stuffed with papers, quizzes, projects, and tests. It's hard to catch some down time between all the school work, our jobs, and extra curricular activities.

So I thought I would take a break for just a few minutes and tell y'all about my Spring Break adventures this year. No, I wasn't working like I usually do: I was traveling across the Atlantic to visit Great Britain.

Through the Honors Institute, a group of students were given the opportunity of a life time. We got to see many historic and ancient sites, and experience a whole new culture. Hinds has an amazing partnership with Bridgwater College in the town of Bridgwater, Somerset, England. It has lasted for 19 years so far! During the ten days abroad, we had the chance to work with British students to do research for a company based out of Jackson called Bomgar, Inc. For our housing, each student was assigned to a host family that we stayed with for the week. We made friendships and connections that we will never forget.

Here is a list of all the places we went (We could talk about it all day long otherwise):

Windsor Castle: Where the queen lives. We toured much of the castle where royals lived for hundreds of years.

Hinds student Europe trip

Stonehenge: It is huge! I almost thought it would be over-rated, but now I understand why people are so intrigued by it.

Hinds Community College students visit stonehenge

Exmoor National Park (English Coastline): We went hiking up a mountain trail that overlooked the Atlantic ocean. The view from this area was breathtaking.

Beutiful view of the atlantic photo by Hinds student Danielle Creel

Wells Cathedral: One of the oldest and most beautiful cathedrals in the world. It is covered in hundreds of statues and stained glass windows.

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Ancient Roman baths in Bath: dating back to the roman age, these natural springs were said to have healing powers. People would come from hundreds of miles away to have a dip in this lead lined pool and hopefully be cured.

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Glastonbury Tor and Glastonbury Abbey: Glastonbury is famous for its steep tor ("hill") and ancient watch tower at the very top. It is also where the ruins of Glastonbury Abbey and the supposed grave of the legendary King Arthur and Queen Guinevere is located.

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Clifton Suspension Bridge and the SS Great Britain: Bristol, England is home to the Clifton Suspension bridge which was designed buy Isambard Kingdom Brunel, who is credited to be one of the greatest Englishman in history. Brunel also buil the SS Great Britain, the first iron steamer to travel the Atlantic.

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Buckingham Palace: Need I say more?

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Palace of Westminster and Big Ben: Where the heart of the government lies!

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Westminster Abbey

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Churchill War Rooms: Now a museum, the Churchill war rooms are shown in the state they were during WWII when Churchill had to flee underground for saftey. Most of the rooms were left exactly as they had been since they were abandoned after the war.

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Trafalgar Square

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The things that we were able to see and experience goes way beyond the money spent. There is something invaluable to being able to make friendships and see the world. Not only did we make British friends, we were about to create bonds within our own group. I grew so close to the friends I already had. As students, we don't get to know out teachers very well. Through this trip, I was able to get to know our teachers Mr. Jason Pope, Ms. Debbie McCollum, and Dr. Ben Cloyd on a much more personal level. For instance, I had no idea before this trip who Mr. Pope was, but afterwards I learned that his parents were music ministers at my church! And also that he has a fanatic love for the Royal Family. I also learned that Dr. Cloyd is a pescetarian (or as he says, "A vegetarian with no morals!") and Ms. McCollum is just the coolest woman ever. How many women do you know that have roasted marshmallows over volcanoes? Only Ms. McCollum. ;).

We spent two days in London, visiting a few places of our choosing as well as seeing a musical. This was my favorite part: seeing Les Miserables at Queen's Theater in Picadilly Circus. I also was able to visit the British museum, which has so many rooms and artifacts and ancient life packed into it that it can make your head spin.

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Where, oh where would I be without my Hinds family? We all had a wonderful time getting to meet new people and learning more about each other. I will never forget Christi rambling away on the bus (and picking on her about talking too much) or Charli speaking French from the back seat, or Jarrick and his absurd love of chocolate and sweets! Nor will I forget my host family, Toni and Helley Wilmot, who laughed and talked and joked through the night with me and became my British family.

Most people keep telling me, "You probably won't ever go back to England again!" Or, "You will never see these people again!"

It will be a goal to prove this idea wrong. This is far from the end of my travels!

The Hinds CC Eagles Hit The Field, WR Drills

 

The Hinds Community College Eagles finally hit the field and strapped on pads. The team was delayed due to the cold and wet weather that transpired last week. Most teams have been on the field for a good three or four days now. However, WR Coach, Dwike Wilson and his players did not waste any time running through the basics on Monday. The WR position is definitely a position that the Eagles will be focusing on throughout the spring. As the sophmores accept the challenge of a new role going into next season, the underclassmen look to learn as much as they can from Dwike Wilson.  

Typical non-traditional college student gets atypical invitation

 

In some ways, Amanda McMillan of Pearl typifies the non-traditional Hinds Community College student. At age 43, she works full-time waiting tables at Table 100, is divorced and has three children. In her second semester on the Rankin Campus, she is also taking a full-time load of classes at 12 hours.

She’s not sure of her major yet, but found her sociology class fascinating and is considering a sociology or social work major.

But admittedly not many of our students are invited to tour the White House and sit with the nation’s first lady during the annual State of the Union Speech in Washington. That happened to McMillan in February after she got a phone call on a Friday afternoon that resulted in her catching a plane with her 16-year-old daughter Tuesday morning for the Feb. 12 speech that night.

adult college student Hinds Rankin Campus

The path that took her to the White House is unusual. A few years ago McMillan filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission when the company she worked for wouldn’t allow her the same job and pay opportunities as men were offered. She received a settlement in the case in 2011.

The White House asked McMillan to be Michelle Obama’s guest at the State of the Union address as part of President Obama’s push to highlight women’s rights.

And, McMillan has been asked to speak at an upcoming EEOC conference, with details to come.

As the mother of two daughters, she says she’s thrilled to see women’s rights get the attention they deserve.

And after two unsuccessful attempts to make headway in college before, she’s happy to be enrolled at Hinds.

“This time I approached it with ‘You might not graduate next week but you might make a passing grade on your test. Just take one thing at a time and just do one thing at a time, put one front in front of the other and eventually you’ll get where you want to be,’ ” she said.

For more on Amanda McMillan’s story, see an upcoming issue of The Hindsonian student newspaper on Hinds campuses.

 

Cathy Hayden is director of Public Relations at Hinds Community College.

The Marie Hull Gallery Hosts The Work of Chatham Meade Kemp

 

Chatham Meade Kemp's art exhibit will be displayed in the Marie Hull Art Gallery on the Raymond Campus of Hinds Community College through Friday, February 22, 2013.

Red, White, and Georgia Blues - Georgia Blue Restaurant Review

 
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As a 24-year-old commuter student; living in Madison, MS and attending the Raymond Campus of Hinds Community College; the drive to class gives me ample time to think about the day ahead. On the 45-minute commute, both to and from school, I get hungry and I begin to think about good places to eat en route. The Jackson metro area is the culinary capitol of the state with thousands of varied options. Last week, during my search for gastronomical enlightenment, I saw a sign reading “Georgia Blue”, tucked away in the back of a shopping center. It’s a hole in the wall gastro-pub that holds true to the old south way of cooking while grasping a new way to present itself.

As I walked into Georgia Blue I was not greeted at the door, an unusual occurrence, but I found my way to a seat at the bar. The bar back, a bit cold, and seemingly busy was quick to take my drink order. "Water and sweet tea, both with lemon" I asked of him as he remained in a hunched over position. He appeared to be cleaning recently used glasses, left over from a local’s mid-afternoon beer, I’m sure. He brings me my drinks as I continue to scan the menu. I ask "May I please have a shrimp po-boy and a half dozen char-broiled oysters" He assures me that it will be right out. From my periphery I catch the motion of a near by television playing host to a local car dealership commercial. The classy kind that tells you about the cars and what you will get out of your purchase rather than the average "WE'LL MAKE YOU THE DEAL OF YOUR LIFETIME!" cheese ball TV fillers.

I begin to gaze around the restaurant, noticing multiple televisions; all of which carrying ESPN or a smaller network making a poor attempt to compete with the sports media conglomerate. The bar has a wonderful ambience. The back of the bar is open to the remainder of the place with a copper counter top, both cleaned and polished, but distressed with the aged look of water marks from glasses that so often tend to accumulate the condensation of melting ice in the Mississippi heat. It is an indoor restaurant, but in Mississippi an escape from heat and humidity can only be found under the cold wing of a southern winter. The six beer tap handles I find in front of me bring a spice of color to an other wise Delta Bluesy atmosphere, reminiscent of a speak easy I imagined Robert Johnson would have played in, The remaining ten tap handle went almost unnoticed due to a lack of vibrancy. Above the cooler and beer taps is a wooden mantle holding a rainbow of liquors, each using a family name or heraldic device to whisk away those seeking to find some peace in the bottom of a bottle. Two more TVs are above that.

It was no more than ten minutes I waited for my food. As I see another waiter approaching me with what appeared to be my food I couldn't help but get a little excited at the sight before my eyes. The oysters were served in a nickel, or possibly tin, tray with a fresh baguette two lemon slices and homemade cocktail sauce. The half shells were steaming and piled high with the perfect amount of Parmesan cheese that had been melted to a light golden brown. I turn to the Po-boy that lays next the oysters and realize that a poor boy never would have been able to afford this monster sandwich. The bread was like biting into a memory foam mattress, soft enough for comfort and freshness but firm enough for the support the large shrimp, lettuce, tomato, and accouterments that was stuffed between the slices. Inside the bread was a delicate smear of remoulade that yielded a hint of citrus, most likely lemon. The golden-brown sweet potato fries that played along as a good compliment were fried fluffy. They were a little limp but, more than a compatible sidekick.

The meal was hot, it was good, and there was plenty of it. Billy Crystal and his city slicker friends would have been proud. All in all the food was great and the portions were overly fair. My Meal was $25 dollars a bit steep, especially considering the service, but the flavor was worth it. The service was cold but certainly not lacking, the staff took care of my needs but not one of them was smiling. Would I go back? You can bet your sweet Georgia Blues on it!

 

 

 

 

Hinds CC Spring Football Preview

 
Head Football Coach, Gene Murphy,has lead the Hinds Community College Eagles to the top of the American Junior College football pyramid on more than one occasion. In his tenure he has developed some of the greatest players in football, sending nearly 50 of his players to the NFL. Court Truelock and I have gone inside the football program to see what makes this x's and o's mastermind tick.
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My College Experience

 

Do you see yourself in college? I have had people say that I was not going to make it to college, but I clearly proved them wrong because I am blogging about being here!

Coming to college has got to be one of the greatest decisions I have ever made. Not just for the education, but for another view on life, meeting new people and being involved in things. The classes have truly been great and it is a really friendly environment. The food here has also been wonderful. Sometimes I eat by myself, but I am sure that will change! You don’t really care about who you are eating with when you are starving. I promise, I have been there! I am truly blessed to have the friends that I've met here. They are really nice and super funny! I am so glad I am involved in cheerleading here and I think it is good for students to be involved in something so they can meet new people!

I would have not been able to come to college if it was not for the Pell Grant I received! The Pell grant awarded me with the money I was eligible for and it helped so much! It is also good to get scholarships of some kind because whatever your grant does not pay for, your scholarship can. There are so many scholarships you can apply for these days it is unreal! You can never apply for too many. I am so thankful that I got the opportunity and assistance to come to college without paying hardly anything out of pocket!

As a Freshman, I have to say that college is WAY different than high school, and honestly I love college a lot more than I ever liked high school. It's is a lot more peaceful than high school could ever be.

In college you get to choose what classes you want and when you want them, you have the choice of whether you want to live on campus or not, the cafeteria food is a lot better than high school food (and you also have more of a variety to choose from!), you can get a work study job on campus if you're eligible AND get paid for it (like I do!). I really enjoy it! It has been such a fun experience!

All in all, in college you have more freedom than in high school. You don't have to be from around the college to go to school there. The people and activities are really enjoyable. Having the chance to meet other people from all over and not just in the school district is wonderful because then you get new friends and you get to know them and soon they become your best friends! So far, there seems to be no such thing as drama in college (well, I haven't experienced it yet anyway!!).

So with that being said...I am loving my college experience so far and am so glad to be here!

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I have made a wonderful friend that lived down the road from me while I was in highschool but I didnt know her then because she didn't go to my school, but now she does!!

Poole Instructs Students In The Pool

 

In addition to a Fitness Center and two basketball courts, the Hinds CC Raymond Campus Wellness Complex features a swimming pool available to both students and non-students. The pool, built in the early 1970s, is located in the very back of the complex near the coaches’ offices.

hindscc poolDon Poole, director of the Fitness Center, runs the show while overseeing the pool duties as well. Students that are enrolled in a swimming class do not have to have a gym membership in order to swim in class. However, any student that wishes to swim after class hours is required to purchase a 50 dollar gym membership. Poole was a very competitive swimmer in high school, which inspired him to become a certified swimming instructor, where he began teaching in the Northeast. At Hinds, Poole teaches several swimming and lifeguard training classes.

“I strongly encourage students to take a swimming class, I love working with the students and improving their skills,” Poole said.

An average of 20 members uses the pool every day. The pool hours vary from day to day, depending on how many members decide to swim. “We usually have a good mix between adults and students that swim every day,” Poole said.

Wardell Jackson, a sophomore at Hinds, is currently taking a beginning swimming class that Poole teaches.

 “Coach Poole swims exceptionally well and he holds us to high standards while we are in the water with him,” Jackson said.

Poole is a highly qualified swimming instructor who enjoys sharing his knowledge and providing the dos and don’ts.

More information about the Wellness Complex can be found on the Hinds website.

 

Keep Up With Your College Expenses & Financial Aid

 

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In the past, if you were to have any questions about your financial aid status, you would have to personally go the financial aid office to get anywhere. With the newest feature that has been applied to my.hinds, a student no longer has to do this unless there is something you believe is incorrect about what you see.

As of this semester, students can click on a link titled either account activity or View Statement Balance. After clicking on this link, the picture shown above will pop up on your screen and give you a calculation of charges, payments by you or financial aid, and anticipated financial aid. If your final number is negative, that shows that you more than likely have that amount coming back to you during reimbursements (split into four refund dates if you do not have any charges after that time).

Drop down menus (in blue) titled charges, payments and anticipated financial aid are available. The following will tell you what each menu consists of:

Charges: This will tell you what charges have been made to your account such as tuition, room, board and supplies from the book store.

Payments: This will inform you as to what payments have been made and will tell you who funded that payment. For example, you might have paid the $50 room reservation fee, and your band scholarship might have paid for your tuition and room.

Anticipated Financial Aid: This will show what financial aid you have received and how much. This will be more detailed as it tells you what was credited to your account first and how much of a particular scholarship and or loan was credited towards your charges.

Not show above is the Reimbursement option due to the fact that our first reimbursement has not been issued yet. This option will let you know when you are reimbursed and how much you received for that given reimbursement.

Spring 2013 Refund Disbursement Dates:

Feb 22, 2013
Mar 22, 2013
Apr 19, 2013
May 09, 2013

Without a doubt, this is one change that Hinds has made that will benefit us greatly and save us a lot of time by avoiding the long lines in financial aid.

Hinds Community College a Success @ MREAL 2013

 

On February 2, 2013, residence life students from Hinds attended MREAL 2013 at Mississippi State University.

Although February 2 was the big day, the work for us would start long before then. Two of the most important aspects of the conference were school spirit and philanthropy. As a group, we got crunk and got our moves on with the many chants that were established during our meetings. In addition to this, a few of the members were involved in creating a roll call video which consisted of various Resident Assistants (RA) and Residence Hall Association (RHA) members explaining what Hinds truly is.

In additon to the chants and the video for school spirit, we all took part in making Valentine cards for those in hospice, retirement homes, etc. At the end of the week, we had completed over 800 cards to take to the conference.

With the excitement we were filled with the night before the conference, a few of us worked nonstop from 9:00 p.m. to 3:00 a.m. the morning of the conference. I was unable to catch any sleep until 4:00 and I was up by 4:30 ready to go.

As we took our first steps onto the MSU campus, we were already showing our school spirit as our "rivals" Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College (MGCCC) were in the bus right behind us, and as anyone would expect, it was competition from the first moment we made contact. 

After signing in and eating our breakfast, it was time to enter the auditorium for the opening ceremony. This consisted of the viewing of our roll call videos and each school showing out with chants. From this, you could tell that not only do we have rivals, but Hinds has friends, and this was shown through our MAROON... WHITE!!! back and forth collaboration with MSU. Although my primary motivation for attending the conference was to represent my school, I would gain much more from the conference.

The first guest speaker at the conference was Dr. Hank Flick, an instructor at MSU. The reason I was excited about this was that this  person has played an important role in my life as he contributed encouraging words to me my sophomore year of high school that would help me succeed both in education and life. After speaking to fellow attendants about their opinion on Dr. Flick, I heard nothing but positive feedback about his presentation.

After introductions were over, Mississippi Association of Residence Hall Students (MARHS) board members were called out to a meeting, while other conference attendants would go on to attend various programs throughout the day. I had the experience to gain much knowledge from the programs I had attended at MREAL last year; however, this year would be much more different than what I had expected as I was chosen to be a Hinds delegate for MARHS.

The programs that Hinds had submitted were a complete success, and despite my involvement in the meeting, I was able to see first hand just how well prepared my fellow delegates were and how well the programs were going.

At the end of the night, we had a snack dinner and would all meet back up in the auditorium for the closing (and awards) ceremony. Hinds had much success.

Hinds would come out with the following awards:

*Philanthropy award for most Valentine cards

*Most Philanthropic (overall)

*Most spirited roll call video

*Top 8 program

In addition to Hinds as a whole, a personal award was also received by Hinds' very own Ernest Dixon. Mr. Dixon was presented an award for his years of involvement with MARHS.

If this wasn't enough, this conference laid the path for Hinds to become more involved in MARHS as we would find out that I was elected for the Associated Director of Communications for the MARHS board for 2013-2014. 

The MREAL 2013 conference was quite a memorable experience for each and everyone of the Hinds delegates that attended, and I know that most of us look forward to attending future conferences.

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