Christian Clubs Create Community on Campus

By Zoe Sypolt

   Discovering who you are and what you believe is an essential part of the college experience.  When beginning this new adventure living away from home for the first time, many students find themselves searching for friends of likeminded faith for support when facing temptations associated with the stereotypical college lifestyle.  

   Potomac State College has three clubs to help students become more deeply rooted and grow in their Christian faith.

   Campus Crusade for Christ (CRU) is an international organization that was founded in 1951. It is one college organization that’s fighting to decrease the staggering statistic that 70 percent of first year Christian college students walk away from their faith. 

   PSC’s CRU chapter, Campus Hope in Christ, meets for lunch every Tuesday in the Davis Conference Center from 12-12:30 p.m.

   Professor Vicki Huffman said she was one of those statistics. Although she did not necessarily walk away from her faith, she found it difficult to devote time to focus on her relationship with Jesus. She became a co-sponsor for CRU when she started working at PSC in 2005. 

   Although PSC’s CRU is much smaller than other college campuses, she described it as a “safe haven” for believers to fellowship together and share struggles and testimonies. They also sponsor a free movie night for students to attend. 

   Recently, the club provided free tickets for “God’s Not Dead: A Light in Darkness” at the Country Club Mall Cinema.

   Drew Waasdorp, current president of CRU, joined as a freshman in the fall of 2016. He described CRU meetings as a place where students can be filled both physically and spiritually, as they enjoy lunch and a hear message from local pastors and leaders each week.    

   After Sara Sredy attended the first CRU meeting, she knew the club would become a part of her weekly routine.    

   “We did a group activity that involved everyone writing on a piece of paper ‘God can’ and filled in the blank,” she said.  “It was something so simple but reminded me of how much God does in our lives.”  

   Sredy said that weekly meetings give her a break from academics and remind her to make time for faith in her busy schedule. 

   Cross Impact, another Christian student organization at PSC, is sponsored by the Gospel Life Baptist Church in Keyser. The chapter meets on Wednesdays at 8 p.m. in the Heritage Room. 

   While Professor Derick Matlick is the club sponsor, Pastor Mike Wyatt usually runs the weekly meetings. 

   “Our club is a place where students can come and feel support,” said Matlick. “The college environment can be pretty tough on an 18-year-old.” 

   Cross Impact is a way to reach college students with the Gospel and encourage growth. “We’ve seen kids come to know Christ as their Savior during our weekly meetings. It’s just a great place to give them the support that they may be lacking when they leave their home church and friends,” said Matlick. 

   Christians around campus are not just meeting weekly to revive their spirits. The Campus & Community Ministries Club meets every Monday in the library from 3-4 p.m. 

   It entails a variety of community outreach projects, including taking mission trips each spring, working with local community members, and creating seasonal items for the nursing home. 

   Last year, students spent their spring break rebuilding houses in southern West Virginia that were destroyed by the floods. 

   Local Pastor Lauren Godwin, the sponsor of the club said, “It’s a club where students get to serve others in the community, which is one of the things Jesus called us to do.” 

His Story of Her Story Praises Positive Women

By SeVohn Hunter

   When asked what woman influenced your life, most people will say their mother. Five men on campus decided to look past the exhausted answer and dig a little deeper.

   Derek Artimez, Dr. Edward Brown, Dr. Greg Ochoa, Nick Goff, and Zach Halterman discussed influential women who impacted their lives and careers at the “His Story of Her Story” event.

   Halterman, a PSC student, opened the presentation with a PowerPoint titled “Impactful Mothers.” His presentation named powerful women in history who are rarely referred to as mothers. He mentioned women like Cleopatra, the ruler of Egypt for three decades; Marie Curie, the famous scientist who discovered Radium; and Olympias, the wife of Phillip II. He also included his own mother at the end of the PowerPoint who he said “helps with everything I need without asking for anything in return and makes a mean cherry cobbler and buffalo chicken dip.”

   Artimez followed with a story about Tara Curtis, his Public Relations 101 professor. He described her as one who knew her students’ names and could converse with each of them about their personal lives. 

   Artimez stayed after class every week to help Curtis with cleaning up the classroom. He told her that if she needed anything, he would be there. Because of his generosity, Curtis gave him an interview and eventually an internship with the WVU Alumni Association. This opportunity introduced Artimez to his current career as PSC’s alumni relations coordinator.

   Criminal Justice Instructor Goff gave a very passionate speech about Senator Susan Collins. 

   Collins was a key contributor to putting down the Skinny Repeal, an attempt to remove the Affordable Care Act, which she was against from the beginning. Goff endured a serious car accident, which led to high medical bills that were thankfully covered by his health insurance.     

   Later on, Goff was without healthcare for some time, but he was lucky enough to avoid any serious injuries or illnesses. He described Collins as a very strong woman because she stood up for what she believed in and said without healthcare he would not be here today.

   Dean of Academic Affairs Ochoa talked about his grandmother Vivian Flores. Ochoa’s family moved around a lot because his father was in the military, but he remembers his grandmother visiting everywhere they lived. He shared his many memories with her. Once when he was living with her, he had an internship at the company where she worked, and they would ride to work together every morning. His grandmother taught him to be strong, adventurous and easygoing. Ochoa said, “My nana was there at my birth, and I was there when she died.”

   Activities Program Manager Brown ended the night with a presentation on Mother Jones aka Mary Harris. Known as the “most dangerous woman in America,” Mother Jones was a passionate activist for child labor rights and was not afraid to defy the government.   

   She was also a labor organizer for the United Mine Workers and helped unionize southern coalfields of West Virginia. She was jailed many times for her actions against the government, but she never stopped fighting for what she believed in. “Pray for the dead and fight like hell for the living” is a well-known quote by Mother Jones.

   The community members, students and faculty who attended applauded the men for sharing their stories. Jaydin Haskins was a student of Goff’s and said, “I never would have known that he didn’t have healthcare [for a period of time] or how much the Affordable Care Act would affect everyone.”     

   Haskins said that the event allowed her to get to know some of the speakers on campus.

PSC Students Engage in Diversity Among Peers

 

2018 Diversity Ambassadors Group Photo color

Potomac State College students embrace diversity and get to know someone different than them. The students participated in a five week initiative where they spent time with a peer who came from a different cultural, religious, or racial backgrounds. Photo by Potomac State College.

Potomac State College encourages its students to embrace diversity and explore new cultures, and that was the ultimate goal of the Diversity Ambassador Initiative. This initiative challenged around 24 PSC students from different religious, racial and ethnic backgrounds to get to know each other over the course of five weeks. 

  Before the program began, the volunteers participated in a questionnaire to compare compatibility. Students were then partnered and spent the next five weeks together. Through the program, participants gained points from doing activities together like eating meals, studying in the library or just hanging out. 

   “We’d do things like play video games and just talk about what we go through in life and the struggles we have had to overcome as individuals,” said PSC freshman Canyon Hunt. 

  Founder of the program, PSC Activities Program Manager, Dr. Edward Brown, stated that this initiative challenges stereotypes and fears. Brown also said that this program has a lasting impact on the students, whether it be in their casual social lives or in the workforce. 

   Participants learn how to work with diversity and “take down barriers and stereotypes to get to know someone,” said Brown. 

  “I think the program went very well,” said PSC sophomore Serena Redman. “I would have to say that my favorite part would be getting to know someone and how different they can be.” 

   Being bi-racial, Redman said the initiative really stood out to her. “It got me out of my comfort zone and allowed me to really get to know someone for who they are, and not what they look like,” said Redman.

  “I’m an introvert,” said PSC senior James Beall, “so the program itself made me get out there and talk to someone I hadn’t before.” Beall stated that through this program he and his partner became friends and continue to do things together. 

   The initiative also helped to knock down the cultural barrier between rural and urban students. “There’s a cultural divide between urban and rural, so the program is really beneficial in that sense,” said Beall. 

  “To bridge that gap we definitely need this program because it brings people together in a friendly environment. It encourages people to get to know ‘other’ people. I really hope the program progresses every year. We need it to.”

  Brown is seeking funding for next year; he hopes that it will continue at PSC campus and expand to other college campuses. He will be presenting the program in Morgantown to WVU campus administrators and other institute observers at the Student Success Summit. 

For information contact Brown.

Keyser High School’s Tornado TV gets “Locked Out”

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Keyser High School’s Tornado TV (TTV) recently created a 10-part miniseries titled “Locked Out,” available to watch in its entirety on the Tornado TV Facebook page.

Filmed over the course of four months (from September to January), showrunner Logan Cook, and fellow TTV members Jonathon Myers and Jerrod McGann, used an iPhone and the video editing software iMovie to bring “Locked Out” to life.

According to KHS journalism teacher Michael Staggers, who oversees the production of the show, TTV used to be a daily announcement show broadcasted via television to every room at KHS during the early 2000s. Now that the wiring in the television sets has gone bad due to age, TTV has become a web series that still acts as a news show for the school, but Staggers has also given his students the creative freedom to explore their storytelling talents.

Cook, a junior at KHS and an aspiring filmmaker, created the 10-part scripted comedy miniseries “Locked Out,” a series that acts as a clever excuse for why the TTV crew can’t film in their recording room while they are remodeling it. “I wanted to clean up the room,” Cook said, “but to clean up the room I couldn’t film [in] the room, so I had to have a reason why we weren’t in the room.” The series gets its title from the very reason the crew can’t film in their regular recording room: someone has locked them out of the room, and it’s up to them to find out who.

Episode one of the series begins with Cook whistling as he tries to find the correct key to open the TTV room. After testing every key on his keyring with no success, he calls his journalism teacher, Mr. Staggers, to try his luck with the keys. When none of them work for him, Staggers notifies Cook that they have been “locked out” of the room. At the end of the episode, a mysterious masked figure dressed in black from head to toe appears at the TTV room door and disappears in a flash as soon as he’s spotted.

Episode two has Cook bored out of his mind as he sits in class with nothing to do since the TTV room is locked. Before the episode comes to an end, Cook comes face to face with the masked figure again in the hallway after a bathroom break.

In episode three, Cook starts to descend into madness as he creates a list of clues and evidence on a whiteboard to solve the mystery of who the masked figure (now known as Nemo) is and why he locked the room. Staggers chose this episode as one of his personal favorites from the series. He enjoyed watching Cook at the end of the episode kicking and screaming as McGann and Myers drag him out of the classroom. “I also enjoyed the whiteboard in general just because it had a lot of inside jokes and stuff like that written on it that people might not have gotten,” Staggers said.

After crying hysterically over their locked room, Cook, McGann and Myers walk out on an interview with KHS cheerleaders outside of the TTV room and decide to go against Staggers’ wishes and hunt down the mysterious Nemo in episode four.

Episode five has the TTV crew interrogating three KHS students they suspect are secretly Nemo in a series of good cop-bad cop-funny cop scenarios. McGann sited this episode as his favorite from the series.

Episode six of “Locked Out” is packed with so many twists and turns that to spoil even one of those elements would be a disservice to the creativity of the TTV crew. However, Staggers also sited this episode as one of his favorites because at one point in the episode, the TTV crew visit his former co-anchor from when he was a member of TTV, Keyser Primary School teacher Stephanie Stephen, at her classroom in KPS to seek her help in finding Nemo (pun intended).

Cook, who directed every episode of “Locked Out,” said his favorite scenes were the last scenes of each episode.

Staggers said Potomac State College students will enjoy seeing a show completely produced by students in their age range. “[PSC student’s] humor is similar to I’m sure what [TTV students] have, and they would probably laugh at a lot of the same things that these guys find funny.”

With 1,197 likes and 1,247 followers, the TTV Facebook page continues to upload new episodes weekly. Other episodes available on their page include “Mr. Staggers, I Have an Idea,” “The Fazz and the Fureyous” and “Tornado TV 3017.” TTV can be found on Facebook at Tornado TV.

 

Classic Westerns Return To Site of Keyser Theatre

Screenshot_20180409-085118

Photo by IMDB.com

The classic film “High Noon” returns to the silver screen at the site of the former Keyser Theatre where, over half a century ago, audiences gathered to enjoy it.

This dramatic showing is just one of several cinematic selections that are being studied in a course on the American western film genre at Potomac State College.

The course consists of both a classroom portion on campus and a cinema portion in the restored theatre at The Indie On Main, Keyser’s budding destination for art and film enthusiasts.

“The western is the story we tell ourselves about America,” said the instructor, professor Richard Hunt, “This film is a morality play; it’s about duty, honor and community.”

The other films being explored in the course are:

 

This selection represents the genre that remained popular all throughout the twentieth century and starred famous actors such as Gary Cooper, John Wayne, Grace Kelly, Lee Van Cleef and Clint Eastwood.

The students not only immerse themselves in the history of American filmography, but also the history of Keyser itself. The renovated theatre retains the architecture from when it was first constructed in 1939 and served the residents of Keyser as the town’s sole movie theater until it closed its doors in 1977.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Now, the building has been refurbished and reinvented as much more. In June of 2017, Stephen Settmiti purchased the venue and transformed it into The Indie On Main.

“When I saw the old Keyser movie house for sale, I decided to go headlong into reopening it as a mixed arts venue,” Settmiti said. His goal is to create an environment where students can get involved and experiment with the arts.

Students who are interested in the visual arts may wish to take advantage of The Indie’s studio space and art classes; musicians and entertainers can perform in front of an audience on open-mic nights every Thursday; and fans of cinematography can enjoy cult classic films on the weekends. More information on events taking place at The Indie On Main can be found at the venue’s website or Facebook.

Finding an On-Campus Job

 

29513148_1607894785970903_7283026261416324263_n

Photo from PSC Facebook of SeVohn Hunter and Lucy Litten

The hardest part about working in college may be finding a job on campus that fits your interests. “I really enjoy the Student Ambassador Program because it’s an excellent opportunity to encourage others to come to our college,” said Lucy Litten. “It has taught me how to talk with people and work on a team and I definitely plan on coming back next semester.”

Most of the jobs offered at Potomac State College are run through Federal Work Study, but there are also student employment jobs for students who are not awarded work study.

What is work study?

“Federal work study is a need-based “self-help” aid program which allows students to earn money by working a part-time job (up to 20 hours per week) on or off campus.” The student and their supervisor decide on a work schedule based on how much they are awarded and the student’s schedule. Students are paid $8.75 an hour and their money is deposited directly to their bank account. There is also a page on the PSC website that explains Federal Work Study. This page tells how to qualify for work study, what to do once you have qualified, and where to find Federal Work Study jobs. It also tells what to bring for payroll processing.

PSC Job Resource

MoutaineerTRAK is the best resource for finding an on-campus Federal Work Study job. After logging on to MountaineerTRAK using your MIX username and password, simply select WVU Keyser Campus under the employer directory. This will show all available jobs on campus.3cb88884-92ca-4013-850b-8c47e9dfb4ae

Work Study Jobs

Many work study jobs are office assistants, who complete tasks like making copies, organizing files and other basic office work. There are also more interesting positions. A student assistant for athletic training helps the athletic trainers of PSC sports teams during games and practices. Student assistants for marketing and communications write press releases and take photos for PSC public relations. Game workers work athletic events on campus for many different sports.

Student Employment Jobs

PSC also offers some interesting student employment jobs on campus. Student employment jobs pay $8.75/hour. The supervisor works with the student to determine a schedule that does not exceed 20 hours per week.

Resident Assistants are chosen through an application process at the beginning of each semester. RAs are appointed many responsibilities. These include attending activities on campus, organizing floor meetings, and completing work related duties and tasks. Moreover, they must meet academic standards at all times. RAs are compensating with a scholarship that pays for their room and board.

36154122530_39b315904b_o

Photo by PSC Flickr

RA color crop

Photo by PSC Flickr of Emily Curtin and Rocky Morgan

The Student Ambassador Program is a revamped job on campus. Student Ambassadors make calls to prospective students, answer any questions they may have, and schedule tours or meetings with the needed persons on campus. Student Ambassadors also prepare the materials for open houses, orientations and tours. They are also trained to lead tours.

Dining services offers many positions on campus, both work study and student employment jobs. Workers for dining services prepare and serve food. “The student worker positions are competitive due to the number of applicants. While no experience is necessary, we look for students with good attitudes and stress the importance of dependability,” said Brian Olden, food service manager.

The Academic Success Center hires student employees as tutors. There are also student employment jobs offered at the farms and the equine facility.

With so many work study and student employment jobs to choose from, finding the perfect one should be a breeze.

Women’s Lacrosse Team Falls to Anne Arundel’s Riverhawks

The Potomac State Women’s Lacrosse team suffered a loss to Anne Arundle Community College’s Riverhawks at their home game today, March 31, 2018. The loss comes a day after the Catamounts defeat to Howard Community College.

The final score was 7-27, with the Catamounts scoring 6 more points against the Riverhawks than in their previous matchup this season on March 4. Anne Arundle remained dominant on the field, keeping the ball in their possession for the majority of the match.

First half highlights for the Catamounts included “Birthday Goals” scored by midfielder Madelyn Price. Spectators went wild and cheered for the Catamounts’ birthday girl who narrowed the gap when the score was just 2-4.

Catamounts player Drew Sharman also made her fair share of impressive plays during the match, managing to be the Catamounts most reliable person to move the ball from one end of the field to the other. Sharman streaked across the field, intimidating opponents.

Sharman alone was not enough to make the Riverhawks let up on their lead. The first half ended 6-15, and when the game resumed the Catamounts substituted Hannah Bernatowicz as their goalkeeper. PSC’s defense was working overtime to try and shift the balance in their favor from the Riverhawks’ strong offense, and some of the match’s most impressive saves came in the second half when Bernatowicz kept the Riverhawks at bay.

The Riverhawks’ Madeline Szanyi was a leading factor in the fall of the Catamounts, making remarkable catches from long distances and denying the Catamounts the ball at all times.

The Catamounts will get a short break from their two losses this week before facing CCBC Essex in a home game on April 14. They currently stand at 1-4 for the season.