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Monthly Archives: September 2013

UWT’s first doctorate degree offered in educational leadership

In June, UW Tacoma began offering the first doctoral degree outside of the Seattle campus in Educational Leadership (Ed.D.), a multidisciplinary program designed to face the unmet need for qualified instructors in the area. The program offers three study options: P-12 Educator (with Superintendent Certification) Leadership, Nursing Educator Leadership, and Higher Education Leadership.“One of the things that kick-started this program is that there is not a current doctoral program in South Sound that works with health and education leadership. There’s an underrepresentation,” said Ed.D. Director Chris Knaus about how the degree path came to be. Knaus also said that there was interest at the level of state legislature to develop “community related leadership,” in part because anyone interested in obtaining a similar doctorate degree would have to leave the South Puget Sound area to do so, creating a disconnect in the community. The Ed.D. program focuses on those currently working in a..

Travel like a rock star… or make a fool of yourself trying

By Russ Davis Last month, I found myself walking through a partitioned hallway inside Brussels Airport, winding my way into the arrivals hall. I met up with my father, who had arrived in Belgium a few days earlier. As I went to meet him, I was wearing aviator sunglasses and walking somewhat off-kilter because of the weight of my luggage. Later that night, he told my mother that I had “the perfect rock star thing going on.” Huh? was my initial thought. Apparently, wearing sunglasses and walking a certain way gave the impression that I was striving to be Jon Bon Jovi with (slightly) shorter hair. I’ve never thought of myself that way. I don’t think I’d ever reach that level of awesome. And anyway, as far as the sunglasses go, my guide was more General MacArthur than Bon Jovi (more on that later). But my father’s words stayed with me. Also on my mind were the words of Kenny Chesney and Tim McGraw; in 2012, the two country artists recorded the song “Feel Like a Rock Star,” which encour..

Tuition Woes: Is crowdfunding the answer?

The Web has changed many things about how we access education. Massive open online courses have made Ivy League classes available for free across the world, online university programs allow students to earn a degree from home, and now the Internet gives people the opportunity to raise tuition money from strangers. Since the popularization of crowdfunding in the early 2000s by sites like Kickstarter, GoFundMe, and Indiegogo, people and organizations have been tapping the resources of the masses to raise money for everything from documentaries and books to toys and video games. However, as crowdfunding grows, it has become accessible to people looking to fund more personal causes including things like college tuition. This growing trend has initialized the creation of crowdfunding sites solely for higher education, giving donors a focal point for investing in students. These sites give supporters the opportunity to make contributions, which then go to the student for tuition and fees..

Requiem for an Xbox 360

The GameStop clerk looked at me funny when I purchased “Dead or Alive Xtreme 2,” sequel to “Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball,” along with you. I didn’t cringe when the clerk eyed the video game box art of sexy bikini-clad digital women. When my friend had brought his Xbox 360 to CSULB Anime Club and showed the trailer of “DOAX2” displaying Kasumi frolicking on a sandy shore, her orange-red hair waving, I said to myself, “I’m getting an Xbox 360!” And so I bought you on November 13, 2006, the day “DOAX2” came out, not caring that I purchased a game notoriously reputed only for its “independent breast physics.” Grades slipped from good to barely satisfactory as you kept me entertained late into the night, until hearing morning birds chirp as my thumbs continued to busy themselves. Lots of great games we played: “Red Dead Redemption,” “Devil May Cry HD Collection,” “Call of Duty: World at War,” “Grand Theft Auto IV,” “Gears of War 2,” and “Rumble Roses XX” just to name a few. (Yes..

Local flavor continues to be served fresh at A Renaissance Cafe

The campus may be going through a lot of changes, but independently-owned standby A Renaissance Café continues to offer fresh food at a decent price. Atmosphere “Hotels send people here for the local flavor,” owner Keith Flowers boasted. The café’s walls are covered with prints, featuring images like famous actors, classic movies, vintage Tacoma maps, and even one of R. Crumb’s classic counterculture characters, Mr. Natural. Lava lamps line the top of a partition from seating to kitchen. A collection of black light posters adorn the bathroom, providing a bit of nostalgia from Flowers’ college dorm room days. Menu As opposed to pre-packaged options offered by large corporate franchise restaurants, Flowers works to keep the food fresh at his café. Even the coffee is provided by local company Dillanos Coffee Roasters which is based in Sumner. The restaurant offers breakfast all day and their menu mainly consists of a variety of omelets and sandwiches. A café specialty is the breakfa..

Alternative TV 101

Remember when the Independent Film Channel (IFC) only showed cult favorites like “Night of the Living Dead,” Wes Anderson flicks and French new wave? Well they also have shows now. With the success of their hipster-frankenstein experiment “Portlandia,” they have acquired a die-hard fanbase who seem to respond to counter culture television. And while “Portlandia” may have transcended into the mainstream, the shows that found their catalyst through it can certainly get you through the months before Season 4. Comedy Bang! Bang!- “Comedy Bang! Bang!” is a late-night show, featuring host Scott Aukerman and his one-man musical accompaniment Reggie Watts. Never has there been such a duo since Hall & Oates! The show is weird but not enough to be thrown in with the stoner comedies of Adult Swim. Yet it’s certainly WTF enough to file it with Salvador Dali’s “Un Chien Andalou.” Guest stars are the main attraction, with A-list appearances from “Mad Men’s” John Hamm although they call him “Juan J..

REVIEW: ‘Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs’

I’m going to get this out of the way: I loved “Amnesia: The Dark Descent.” The atmosphere was rich, it had a deeply engrossing plot, and I had never played any game nearly as frightening. With that said, if you loved “Amnesia” for those reasons and only those reasons, you may want to pick up “Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs,” developed by The Chinese Room. You will undoubtedly like it and it’s only $20 on Steam. If you were also drawn to the strong puzzle elements, freedom of exploration, and constant threat of the unknown, you might still want to buy it but prepare for mild disappointment. Before I go any further, let me just say that I liked this game a lot. I have been craving a terrifying and masterfully crafted horror gaming experience like that of the original “Amnesia” ever since I finished my play-through. This sequel delivered in that area splendidly. “A Machine for Pigs” manages to capture that cat-and-mouse feeling quite well for the majority of the game. The plot is fiendish..

The horror of ‘The Shining’ continues

Stephen King is one of the most acclaimed authors of the contemporary horror genre with successes such as “Carrie,” “Salem’s Lot,” and “The Green Mile.” His books have sold over 350 million copies and have been adapted to award-winning feature films such as “The Shawshank Redemption” and “Misery.” King cites “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” and “Lord of the Flies” as two of his favorite books and has mentioned fellow horror genre author Ray Bradbury as a major influence. After his mother’s death, King and his family moved to Boulder, Colorado. This is where he wrote one of his most successful novels, “The Shining,” published in 1977, which was also adapted to the silver screen starring Jack Nicholson. The novel was largely influenced by King’s visit to a haunted hotel called the Stanley Hotel located in the Rocky Mountains. “The Shining” was King’s third published novel and first bestseller. The success of the novel firmly established King as a preeminent author in the horror genr..

Tips for visiting Hungary

For those interested and/or planning on visiting the country of Hungary, here’s some information you’ll likely find helpful for your travels… Budapest When you fly into the country, this’ll be the first place you’ll see, if not the place you’ll be staying. The city’s name is the imaginative combination of two former cities, Buda and Pest, which united in 1873. I’ll admit I haven’t gotten to fully explore the city, but one of the first sights to see would be Buda Castle, perched on a hill above and beside the Danube. If you’re up for some light subterranean exploring, the underground Labyrinth near the castle might be your bag; just be wary that it’s a cave and the leaky ceilings that caves entail. If you’re looking for something a bit more thrilling, I hear a wooden roller coaster that was built in 1922 still operates in Vidam Park. In the case that you’re craving Mexican food, the city probably holds your best chance for satisfaction in Arriba Taqueria… their chorizo burritos are su..

Is the free ride over for Link passengers?

Last week, Sound Transit held a forum on campus to gather student opinion on an upcoming decision the board is preparing to make on whether or not to begin charging for the Link Light Rail. Unfortunately, as last week was the break between quarters, few students were on campus to give feedback, and the board may make their decision on September 26th without hearing important input from those who it will heavily affect. This likely impeding new expense is the result of a Sound Transit policy by which charges are implemented when a fare will offset the cost of operations. Since the Link’s debut in Tacoma in 2003 until now, the cost of charging a fare was greater than the revenue it would have generate; however, with over a million riders a year, a number predicted to rise significantly as the Link expands, this is no longer the case. According to Brian Brooke, Sound Transit Research, Policy and Business Development Manager, intense analysis indicates that charging $1.00 to $2.00 per ..

No ‘Mass’ In Mass Transit: Why Driving is Easier On UWT Students

In Dave Barry’s excellent 2006 book “Dave Barry’s Money Secrets,” he remarks, “Despite the fact that colleges are, theoretically, institutions of higher learning, it apparently has never occurred to the geniuses who run them that anybody would be arriving by car. The result is that….many students spend their entire college careers cruising around looking for a legal spot.” To the best of my knowledge, Mr. Barry has never visited UWT; but reading this passage, you can imagine why I might be tempted to think otherwise. Parking has long been a tough issue at UWT, but it’ll soon get a little tougher. A September 13 article in The News Tribune reports that parking on Pacific Avenue will get tighter: The parking limit in front of UWT sidebar buildings will be cut from two hours to 90 minutes. This means students who previously parked on Pacific Avenue will need to find a new temporary home for their vehicles elsewhere around campus. So what do we do? I can already hear the solution pitche..

A Reborn Ghost Town

By Katrine Vigilius Katrine Vigilius is from Copenhagen, Denmark. A recent high school graduate and passionate writer, Katrine has spent the summer as a resident at the church Soma Tacoma. This summer was her first time in Tacoma. The first thing I noticed about Tacoma was not the Link. It wasn’t the Museum of Glass, the homeless, the coffee shops, or the numerous parks. The first thing I noticed about Tacoma was the past. Every street corner casts shadows of the past. Writings on the walls tell stories of long forgotten men’s past greatness and of fortune seekers who built the foundation of the city with their dreams and hopeful visions. Train tracks running through the streets testify to the vibrant industry and bountiful spirit brought to the northwest on train tracks fuelled by the boldness and hard work of entrepreneurs and business people seeking the heights of success at the foot of Mt. Rainier. They express stories of Tacoma’s heyday, when it was an exuberant anthill of hard-..

So Many “Street Fighter IV” Games! Oh, My!

How many “Street Fighter IV” games has Capcom released? Let’s count: “Street Fighter IV” (2009), “Super Street Fighter IV” (2010), “Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition” (2011), “Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition Version 2012” (a free downloadable patch), and finally, coming in 2014, “Ultra Street Fighter IV.” Although “Version 2012” was a free patch, it was a significant enough patch to be called its own game because it overhauled the roster. So in total, counting “Version 2012” and “Ultra,” there are five “Street Fighter IV” games. And that is since only 2009! As a “Street Fighter” fan, I was excited when I heard news of a “Super” update to the first “Street Fighter IV.” Even though I mainly use Ken, the revelation of new characters and the option to choose a second Ultra Combo elated me. But then Capcom annoyed me when it said it will release an “Arcade Edition” of “Super Street Fighter IV,” adding characters and balancing tweaks. I was satisfied with the first “Super St..

Reading in the Digital Age

As cheering and delayed Happy Birthdays wafted around me, the glistening, black box with orange letters printed “Kindle Fire HD” revealed itself through red wrapping paper. The room went silent as I felt stares pierce me, waiting for a reaction. I smiled and touched the black box and then smiled again. My audience breathed a sigh of relief. I had long avoided this moment but was extremely relieved that I didn’t have to do the dirty deed myself. That is, give in to the Digital Age. I am a traditionalist, especially when it comes to literature. I will read under a tree on purpose and visit the book section in Walmart just to get a whiff of the “new book” smell. I enjoy eyeing my bookshelf from time to time and admiring my collection of classic literature. Lastly, I just enjoy the feeling of picking up a book to read it, followed by the sweet satisfaction of putting it down when you have read it all. We humans have been so accustomed to reading this way for centuries that any other meth..

PAX Power

PAX Prime, a downright massive gathering of gamers and game developers in Seattle, rivals the mighty E3 in influence. It has become more difficult to acquire passes with every passing year, yet it has always been worth the trouble. New games are often announced at PAX, and many more are playable years before their release. Games like “Titanfall,” “Watchdogs,” and “The Elder Scrolls Online” created waiting queues so long that gamers were turned away from the back of the line to avoid blocking walkways. The Regional “League of Legends” Championship was the main event for a large fraction of those in attendance, and in spite of utilizing a massive auditorium, it drew an immense line which at times required a commitment to multiple hours of standing in place. It was almost like Disneyland. But in spite of being somewhat frustrating to one who could not get in line for some of these attractions, it was quite uplifting to see how passionate so many attendants were about their favorite upco..

The Top 5 Indie Games Right Now

Minecraft: Where Legos meet computers, “Minecraft” gives adults the outlet to create, destroy, and play God. The beauty of it all is that you are a barely 3-dimensional character armed only with a pickaxe and your imagination. Players have the ability to create anything from a gothic castle on a cliff to a fully interactive to- scale Starship Enterprise. The unavoidable question remains is how much time is actually required to “minecraft.” Well, I am not going to sit here and judge the authors, as whose first thoughts after laying eyes upon a minecraft rendering of the entire set of “Game of Thrones” are, “who has this much time?” You just think, wow and then you judge much later after attempting it yourself. The Walking Dead: Almost everyone loves “The Walking Dead,” but for those who don’t, they usually love this game. The game is about decisions and you will be making so many you will dread attaching yourself to any of these characters. The game is stylishly rendered with a comic b..

The Legend of DB Cooper: Polite Pacific Northwesterner Hijacks Plane

If you haven’t heard, knowing the story of old D.B. Cooper is a Pacific Northwestern right of passage. Hell, it’s right up there with an acquired taste for grunge music, Rainier beer, and a vitamin D deficiency. Now pay attention, else you’ll have to learn like I did: spending hours listening to a salty old barfly regale the tale whilst you bide your time over beer nuts at Bob’s Java Jive. It was the Winter of 1971, and while hot napalm burned Vietnam’s night air, flowers were being inserted in gun barrels stateside. Despite this, not much has changed in the Pacific Northwest since 30 years ago concerning the way we protest or beautify gun barrels. In fact, we were going about the usual grocery store visits, procuring of turkeys for Thanksgiving, kayaking, and purchasing of commuter plane tickets. But there was this one time on Thanksgiving Eve in 1971 when a man by the name of Dan Cooper purchased a one-way ticket to Seattle from Portland. When our friend Dan Cooper arrived at his s..

Combined YMCA and Student Center to Break Ground this Fall

A building of more than 70,000 square feet will soon replace Longshoremen’s Hall and house a YMCA as well as multiple spaces dedicated to students, such as lounges, multi-purpose rooms, study areas, and student organization office space. A priority of student leaders for years, the facility is said to meet all of the requirements of a student center due to an accelerated building process and a partnership with the YMCA. A raised Student Activities Fee from $159 to $180 will be included in tuition to support the new building, but Mike Wark, Director of External Relations, said it is a small price to pay for the benefits it will have for students. “For less than they would pay [for a YMCA membership], students get to use the facility which is also a student center, as well as the other Y’s in Pierce County. Very little of the fee is actually going towards the fitness programs,” Wark said. The expansive project is unique to others on campus according to Lane McKittrick, Director of Camp..

ASUWT seeks increased election turnout for 2013-2014 school year

This fall, the Associated Students of the University of Washington Tacoma has many new projects to discuss for the quarter. Specifically are the elections that are coming up. Members of ASUWT have a goal to attract up to 400 voters this year. Also, there will no longer be a voting box this year. They have decided to give out new “voter bags” to the voters. The big goal for ASUWT this year is to have more voter turnout at our campus than UW Seattle and UW Bothell combined. The amount of voters last election totaled 322 which isn’t considered bad at our UW Tacoma campus. The 2013 spring election ended with our president being Peter Z. Pentescu and our vice president being Alex Yuly. Senators this year are Jocelyn Patterson, Megan Nation, Rebecca Dobler-Chale, Aji Fatou Faye, Osheen Gollen, Chantell Muñoz, Marae Slyter, and Gerry Cercado.

Campus vandalism to be a costly repair

The main staircase that runs through Commerce Plaza was vandalized with graffiti last Saturday night, disfiguring the recently renovated area. The stairs were repaired during the summer from damage caused years ago by a Pierce Transit bus crash, and reopened within the last few weeks. The stenciled and hand-drawn graffiti displays the logo and website of a local band and is clustered directly outside of Metro Coffee. The band the graffiti represents was contacted on Facebook by someone connected to Metro Coffee and in an online comment have denied involvement and offered to “see how we can go about helping to remove it.” “I call it disgraceful,” said Husky Sarah Frances about the vandalism. “It’s just rude and doesn’t represent what UWT should represent.” Because black paint was used on concrete and brick, it will be difficult to remove and will cost an early estimate of more than $1500, said Director of Campus Safety & Security Susan Wagshul-Golden. “A police report was filed beca..