By Annie Hunter, Campus Life Editor
Last weekend, Young Harris College hosted a history conference featuring lectures from YHC professors, students and guest speakers from across the country and around the world. YHC faculty, students and community members attended the two-day conference entitled “Remembrances: Constructing Narratives of Wars of the 19th and 20th Centuries.”
The conference, was inspired by a class called “Remembrances of the Great War (WWI)” offered this semester by Natalia Starostina, assistant professor of history. The class offers a unique take on WWI by examining wartime narratives instead of the typical curriculum of dates and battles. Starostina, along with the rest of the history department, expanded on the idea with more YHC-grown ideas.
Starostina’s students from her “Remembrance” and “20th Century European History” courses even had their own session to discuss papers they had written.
“It’s wonderful. It’s very rewarding, and I’m so excited for them. They have been working very hard for this project,” Starostina said.
The art department chair Ted Whisenhunt also added an artistic touch to the conference by arranging a gallery of student artwork to be displayed in lobby of Goolsby Lecture Hall, with the art being war-inspired.
The speakers, who came from all over the globe, were attracted to the conference because the history department had thought outside the box, focusing on the cultural history of remembering war.
“It’s a much broader frame of reference than you usually find with anything involving war, and I think that’s why it kind of took off,” said Thomas Stearns, history department chair.
Among the countries represented at the conference were Russia, Israel, Iran and Turkey, each contributing different ideas and perspectives.
Olivier Courteaux from Ryerson University of Canada, for example, discussed France’s take on D-Day during his lecture on French General Charles de Gaulle, a perspective that would not have been visited in an American classroom.
Topics discussed varied as extensively as the wars which were highlighted, including lectures ranging from “Cold War Rhetoric and the Formation of the Presbyterian Church in America” to “Ottoman Prisoners of War in Kharkiv Region and the Valki Incident.”
The audience, which nearly filled the Wilson Lecture Hall, seemed to be impressed by what the history department had put together.
“The conference was very informative and touched on a wide variety of historical events. It was a great experience and I am glad I attended,” said Judith Hall, a freshman from Dawsonville and student of Starostina.
The success of the conference is a testament to the history department and the college as a whole.
In its first year after creating the history major, the department put together a large-scale conference that Stearns said the conference took on a life of its own and became larger than the department originally expected. Stearns also mentioned that in hindsight, the department should have only attempted the conference about 10 years down the road.
Starostina began looking into hosting a conference last fall and sent in a proposal for funding. By January, the department was fine tuning all the details. Starostina sent information about the conference out to the scholarly community, and the lecturers came to them.
Stearns gives credit to Starostina’s enthusiasm, while she says it was truly a product of the entire history department. It is evident to both, however, that this conference and the process of putting it on, speaks highly of the college and what can be expected from the history program.
“We have a particularly energetic and ambitious faculty. In our very small department, I would say the energy level is very high and the creative, looking down the road experience is very, very much with us,” Stearns said. “That’s a tremendous asset, not just with us but with the college. I think it says really good things about where we’re going in terms of scholarship and in terms of recognition by people elsewhere.” Starostina never had any doubt of the department and the college’s success in the planning of the conference, despite the brand new program.
The proof for her lies in the drive of the students, commitment of the faculty and the high standards of the institution.
“I do believe that Young Harris is a wonderful place and the faculty are very dedicated, sophisticated scholars,” said Starostina. “We are a fine institution, we have wonderful faculty, and talented students. For me, how else could it be?”
By Dillon Sutherland, Staff Writer
This past Tuesday, the Young Harris College Wind Ensemble performed with renowned composer Robert Sheldon at the Glenn Auditorium. Sheldon, internationally known for his work, came to guest compose, playing many of his own pieces, and provided insight to YHC’s students.
Sheldon is the recipient of a plethora of awards. Some of the awards include the Volkwein Award, International Outstanding Bandmaster Award and the American Society of Composers. Sheldon has also been given the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publisher’s Standards Award 24 times.
Along with his many awards and recognition, Sheldon has taught almost three decades in Florida and Illinois public schools as well as the University of Florida, Florida State University, Illinois Central College and Bradley University.
“This was our first time having [Robert Sheldon] come to campus,” said Mary Land, senior instructor of music and director of bands. “We wanted him, because he is an expert in the field. He came and spent the day with our students and showed them how he created his music. It was very insightful.”
With these credentials, many students and locals came to see him. All in attendance seemed to enjoy themselves and were impressed by the show.
“It was fantastic,” said a resident from Hayesville. “It was a good performance. I am amazed by all the talent in this small town. Robert Sheldon’s music was great.”
Sheldon brought much life to the show causing everyone to laugh. The YHC Wind Ensemble offered him gifts to express gratitude for his time which he humbly accepted. One of the gifts was a giant origami crane brought out as Sheldon explained how that was his inspiration for one of his songs.
The performance featured many of Sheldon’s own pieces that the YHC Wind Ensemble played. Some of his works showcased were Visions of Flight, In the Center Ring and One Thousand Cranes.
The students seemed to like Sheldon, his work, and also the fact that he worked with them.
“[Sheldon] is amazing. It was really great having him work with us. He’s really inspiring,” said Jeff Stewart, a freshman music education major from the city of Young Harris.
By Holly Meyer, Staff Writer
This past Saturday, Feb. 12, the Campus Activities Board or CAB hosted their annual Casino Night at Young Harris College. Held from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m., the event was organized by Rouseline Emmanuel, director of Campus Activities. Students gathered in the Recreation Center to enjoy a mix of food and casino games throughout the night.
As students arrived they were handed mock dollar bills to take and exchange for chips to play their choice of games for the night. Among the many casino games were: Russian Roulette, Blackjack and Craps. Also setting the casino-like atmosphere was the addition of virgin daiquiri’s, and other treats such as pigs-in-a-blanket, which were provided by Sodexco.
To help transform the recreation center into a casino, there were two large screens playing mainstream pop-culture music videos. This, along with neon and strobe lights that hung from the ceiling helped set the tone for a night of casino games.
Steadily the crowd grew as the night went on and many students were impressed by how much fun they had. When asked about his take on Casino Night, freshman education major, Niall McCabe, from Dublin City, Ireland exclaimed that, “it was awesome, really good fun!”
Jade Garrison, a freshman education major from Hiawassee said, “I really enjoyed it. It was definitely something I’d like to participate again in the future.”
Emmanuel explained that Casino Night is an event held on campus every year at YHC, and it only costs about $3,000 to fund the entire event; and, due to popularity it is something that CAB plans to continue doing in the future.
TjohnE Productions Inc. provided the games and entertainment for Casino Night at Young Harris, as they have done for the past several years. Fantasy game shows, fantasy casino and even simulated sky diving, are just some of events that TjohnE Inc. will provide for colleges, universities, and high schools all over the country.
By Hailey Silvey, Staff Writer
Last Tuesday, Feb. 8, Frances Lappé, an acclaimed author of 17 books visited Young Harris College. Lappé gave a lecture in the Susan B. Harris Chapel at 7:00 p.m. The lecture was entitled, “Life on a Small Planet with Frances Moore Lappé”. The lecture was presented by the YHC Division of Math and Science and the Sustainability Committee.
The title of the lecture was a play off the title of Lappé’s first book, Diet for a Small Planet. This year is the 40th anniversary of Diet for a Small Planet, which published when Lappé was 27. The focus of the lecture was awareness and practical solutions for sustainability.
Lappé began her lecture by saying “it is too late and things are far too bad.” Lappé considers this the theme song of her life. Lappé then asked the audience if they were concerned about the Earth and if they worried about their future on the planet. This led Lappé into her discussion about how people can help the planet easily.
Lappé’s first question about life was “why hunger in a world of plenty?” Lappé said that she worries about humans shrinking the abundance that the Earth has to offer. The example she gave was “it takes 16 pounds of grains to make one pound of wheat. That’s very wasteful.” She also mentioned the statistic that 40 percent of the food in the United States goes to waste.
Lappé said that she also realizes that nobody in the world would create the world by themselves that we are creating as a group.
Lappé said, “no one person on this Earth wakes up in the morning and says I want to make sure a child dies of hunger today.”
Lappé said that people know how to solve the problems that the world faces, but they are too selfish to do so.
Though Lappé was brought here to talk about sustainability, she seemed far more concerned with the effects of people not being concerned with sustainability. The point of her lecture was that if everyone all were to make a small effort, the world would become a better place for all.
By Kyle Huneycutt, A&E Editor
“Carpe Diem!” These words reverberated off the walls in Wilson Lecture Hall last Thursday evening for students who decided to attend the SGA and Arts Assembly sponsored weekly series, “The Last Lecture.”
The idea behind this series is to give Young Harris College faculty and various guest scholars the chance to give one lecture as if it were their very last. The response to these lectures have generally been very positive, and the latest session was no exception, nearly every seat in the hall accounted for.
Thursday’s speaker was no stranger to the campus of YHC, Reverend “Rev” Whitely, once professor and campus minister of this college for nearly 30 years. Whitely began his lecture the same way he greeted many of his classes, with the ancient biblical Hebrew word, “Shalom,” or peace, wholeness, abundance of life.
Words that he believes embody “what being a student at YHC is all about.”
Those who had had the pleasure of hearing Whitely speak before this lecture, undoubtedly knew what was in store for them in the following 45 minutes. The others who may have thought this was going to be a boring lecture were in for pleasant surprise.
“It was intense. He was so enthusiastic and moving. You absolutely had to pay attention to what he was saying,” said Maryanne Schramke, an undecided sophomore from Blairsville.
Many words could be used to describe Whitely, but boring wasn’t one of them.
Whitely continued to use his time to the fullest by making humorous allusions to Robin Williams in the movie The Dead Poet’s Society, or to Larry Walters, who thought it wise to tie 45 helium filled weather balloons to a lawn chair in which he happened to be sitting.
But stirring just under the surface of these entertaining stories was a much deeper meaning filled with a thought provoking challenge in which he ideally summarizes in two words, “Carpe Diem,” seize the day.
Whitely ended the evening with these parting words.
“If you want to do more than just make a living and consume, if you want to have a fulfilling life, Carpe Diem, and you will live a life that will make a difference to others.”
A roaring standing ovation immediately ensued, the audience clearly impressed with Whitelys’ powerful words.
Rebecca Robinson, a junior biology major from the city of Young Harris said, “He inspires you to do so much. He raises energy throughout the entire time, making his audience energetic too. He was very invigorating.”
By Hailey Silvey, Staff Writer
“If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will get you there.”
These words of wisdom were delivered today in Robinson Dining Hall by Frank Ros, vice president of Hispanic Strategies for the Coca Cola Company. Ros was the guest speaker for the first Presidential Career Luncheon of the spring semester.
After being introduced by Cathy Cox, president of YHC, Ros started his presentation by showing a DVD that was filled with interesting statistics about how the world and job market are changing. For example, the New York Times contains more information in one day’s issue than most people in the 18th century would have come by in their lifetime.
Ros then told students about his life. Ros immigrated to the United States from Barcelona when he was five and a half years old. He was enrolled in school immediately, even though he did not speak any English.
When he was younger, Ros says he was headed down a bad road, and he credits football with saving his life.
Ros went on to receive a scholarship from the University of Georgia, where he started his junior year as a linebacker. Ros had two chances to go to the NFL, but he decided he would rather go on to the business world. Ros worked a few places before going back to UGA to work as an assistant coach while getting his Master’s degree. Coach Vince Dooley, who Ros coached with, hoped that Ros would stay on as a coach, but Ros had other plans.
After declining two job offers from Coca Cola Company, Ros decided to take a position with Coca-Cola in the division of Hispanic Strategies, where he steadily climbed the ladder to Vice President of Hispanic Strategies.
After telling about his life, Ros opened the floor for questions. Students asked a range of questions including, what is the most important characteristic to have in the business.
Ros responded that the most important trait in the business world was one that he learned from playing sports— competitiveness. Ros said, “I can teach someone the ropes, but I cannot teach you to want it.”
With this advice, Ros encouraged students to be persistent and resilient in all their endeavors.