Archive for the ‘Opinion’ Category

The Women’s Corner: Their stories are being heard

Wednesday, October 31st, 2018

Tabitha Barr

For me, this edition of The Collegian is the most important one we will put out this year.

The topic of sexual assault is something that people hate talking about. Each story is somehow pushed under the rug because people want to avoid the topic. It makes people uncomfortable. But that is the exact reason why we are talking about it. The past two months have made the talk of sexual assault a major issue and I don’t want it to go away. I want the conversation to continue. This isn’t just some trending topic that disappears away in a week. This is a crucial subject that always needs to be talked about, and I hope this edition does exactly that.

I interviewed two women about their experiences with being sexually assaulted. Those interviews and those stories will stay with me forever. When I say that their struggles hit me, I mean it. These two women have gone through so much, and it kills me to hear them recount how someone took advantage of them. It makes me sick to even think about it.

The reason I think I’m connected to the stories is because I personally know these women. I’ve known both of them almost my whole life. I consider them my friends. And to hear what they had to endure, what they had to fight through, it sends my emotions into a whirl.

Hearing them say the details of their trauma sent two main emotions through my body. At first I become heartbroken. My heart hurts for them because I hate that they had to endure that pain. I just want to give them a hug and thank them for letting me have the honor of hearing their story. I am truly and utterly grateful.

But the second emotion that washed through me was pure anger. To the horrible human beings (if they can even be called that) who hurt these girls and put them through hell, I just want to throw a chair at them. It just makes me so mad that these men could be so selfish and horrible that they would hurt these two women without thinking twice. I’m getting so flustered that I can’t even write how angry I am.

These women have gone through so much but are overcoming it everyday. They are focusing on their futures and creating a life that they are proud to live. They seriously inspire me. I’m so proud to know these girls and I’m so happy that they have taken this horrendous situation, and made it their life goal to prove that it won’t stop them.

I hope that all of you readers read the stories and let them register. It’s a lot to take in and sometimes our own brains want to reject the messages, but don’t let it. Actually read and comprehend the stories, and understand their struggles. But then, take those stories and let them inspire you to keep going. Any person’s story that deals with sexual assault is important in every way.

Hear them, see them, feel them. These survivors are inspirations.

Tabitha Barr is a Nickerson freshman studying Media Communications and Production

Teacher Appreciation needs to be shared

Friday, October 19th, 2018

Rachel Lyons, Collegian columnist

I don’t know what it is about going back home for a football game, but it’s incredible how much they feel like home – even if I’m finally on the other side of the fence, or counter. I don’t know what it is, because lately I’ve found myself missing the self-induced stress of working concessions.

I miss the little moments when we hit a slow time and could spare a few minutes to laugh together. I miss being so tired after working a shift that I couldn’t see straight.

Recently, I’ve had the opportunity to attend a game and a half – and it’s the best thing I’ve done since I became an alumni of the Newton High School Business Professionals of America (BPA) chapter.

The first time I went back, I only made it in for half of the game – but I had the opportunity to surprise my friends and my advisor. The reaction is one that I’ll remember for the rest of my life.

I didn’t have the best experience at my alma mater, Goessel High School, but nothing that happened there seemed to matter when I was with BPA.

It didn’t matter how bad my day or week had been when I went to a BPA meeting or competition. I didn’t have to worry so much about making myself likable- because my fellow club members like, and still like me for who I am. I’m not perfect, but for them I don’t have to be.

I remember having a conversation with the teacher that I had for eighth-grade computer applications (he had taken a job at Newton High School starting my freshman year) before my first BPA regional competition. It means something to have teachers who are willing to maintain a relationship, even after they have you as a student.

I was given the opportunity to surprise my Family and Consumer Sciences (FACS) teacher at the beginning of the school year with a t-shirt to commemorate our first trip to National Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) Conference. It felt good to know that I made her cry happy tears when she figured out what was going.

I suppose that shows how invested these teachers are in their students. No matter how much ‘trouble’ we give them. These are the kind of teachers who want to hear from students after graduation. They are the teachers who aren’t afraid to tell you that you need to work harder or put more effort into something, whether that something is a class, an assignment, or any type of relationship. These are the teachers that you write, or wish you could write a letter so that they could know that they really did have an impact on you.

This article is coming out exactly two weeks after World Teacher’s Day. I encourage you to take a moment after you read this article to email, text, Facebook message, or otherwise reconnect with a teacher you haven’t spoken to since graduation. I can almost guarantee that doing so will make their day that much better.

I chose not to name teachers mentioned in this article because I don’t need to. I know who these teachers are, and they likely do too. I don’t need names to prove that we all have at least one high school teacher that has impacted us as an individual.

The ball’s in your court now. I dare you to reach out to at least one teacher and tell them how you are doing. Even if you think you don’t know what to say. Saying something is better than saying nothing.

Rachel Lyons is a Newton freshman studying business administration

The Women’s Corner: Halloween is scary, but slut-shaming is even worse

Friday, October 19th, 2018

Tabitha Barr

Halloween is one of the top rated holidays of the year in the United States. It’s a night full of excitement, scares and more. A night where anyone can dress up like anything they want, however they want.

But for women, it’s just another chance for us to get slut-shamed.

There is this tweet that I was sent recently from Collegian Social Media Editor, Emily Fehrman, that said, “‘You’re using Halloween as an excuse to dress like a slut.’ First of all, I don’t need an excuse.” When I read this, the first thing that came to my head was “EXACTLY!”

Halloween is a night where women can dress like whoever and whatever they want and they should be able to do that without judgment from others. If a girl wants to dress sexy or show a little more skin than normal, let her go for it. I love seeing girls show their confidence through Halloween costumes.

Just because a girl is dressing a certain way, does not give you the right to judge her. I grew up being taught that it’s not right to judge because it’s not my place. But now that I’m older, I realize how much the people around me judge by first look. I think judging a person is somehow ingrained in our brains no matter how hard we try to ignore it.

When it comes to the way a girl dresses, whether it be just a regular day, or the night of Halloween, I encourage you to let her live her life without slut-shaming her or her outfit. If she wants to flaunt what she has in a way that for some reason makes you “uncomfortable”, look away. But her body should not make you uncomfortable because it isn’t your concern. She is dressing how she wants to dress, and if she feels confident, that is all that should matter.

Halloween has no rules, nor should it have any. It is a holiday that promotes dressing the way you want and that should be honored and loved. So empower the women around you this Halloween and have fun knowing that you’re letting her be who she wants to be.

Tabitha Barr is a Nickerson freshman studying media communications and production

Write down this number: 1-800-273-8255

Friday, October 19th, 2018

Last month was “Suicide Prevention Month”, and I would like to take the time to discuss that it is OK to reach out and get help.

Many students are afraid to get help because they don’t know were to start, but we all have to start from the beginning of something, find the root of the problem, and help that student or adult get through the difficulty that they are experiencing.

The No. 10 leading cause of death in American is suicide, for people ages between 15-85, and for those born between the years 2000 and 2016 have been increasing and this is due to several things.

Whether it’s depression, family issues or financial difficulties, I want everyone who is reading to message a loved one or a friend and check on them.

We have counselors here on Hutchinson Community College campus that will keep your information private and safe, so no one will know about what you are going through unless you tell anyone else about it.

I only recommend telling a close friend, or a family member, that you are close as well and see if they can help you. Your life matters, and I am not saying this for anyone who is struggling or is wanting to hear this, but I mean it – your life matters.

All the stresses that are happening right now may not end, but it is temporary and it will take some time to get past it. I believe in you, and I know you can do it. Giving up is not the answer, and I need you to get back up and over come this.

I know it’s not easy, but I believe in you and that you can get through it.

My major is psychology, and I have to ensure that my friends are OK, and that they don’t plan on doing anything to harm themselves. If they do, then I have to let their parent know so they can get the help they need.

If they refuse, then I would have to monitor them throughout the entire night to ensure that they will be OK.

The suicide number is 1-800-273-8255 and I urge anyone who is struggling to call this or talk with a loved one.

I am very happy that you are alive and push yourself everyday.

Pablo Sanchez is a Hutchinson freshman studying psychology

Spooky Legends: (Not so) spooky stuff be happenin’

Friday, October 19th, 2018

By Emily Fehrman
Social Media Editor

This last week, I went on two spooky ghost-hunting expeditions around Hutchinson. The first one was the Hutchinson Library with my Editor in Chief, Brenna Eller. The second was Reno Valley Middle School with our Opinion Page Editor, Tabitha Barr.

I’m sure you are reading this in hopes of hearing about some wildly bizarre ghost encounter, but I regret to inform you that nothing of the sort happened. While at the library, Brenna and I got a tour of all the supposedly spooky areas where the ghost of a past librarian named Ida has been known to be seen.

About the scariest thing that happened was after I made a (particularly morbid) joke and then some strange noises erupted from around the corner. Only to find out it was, in fact, the old elevator starting up. Oh and all the paper Mache puppets they keep in the basement? That was also sketchy at best.

While the two of us were investigating in the basement where Ida was said to have spent a big portion of her time, we rounded a corner and scared the living daylights out of ourselves with a mirror. I am still convinced they used the placement of said mirror to scare anyone who dare walk by while in dim lighting.

The second spooky expedition I went on was to a middle school, I think everyone already has a negative connotation about those awful years of their life. So going into a school where it is supposedly haunted by not only one but two ghosts?? No thank you, count this girl out. But I did it for all of you readers who don’t actually know who I am, but I write to you all as if you do. So basically, I indirectly did it for you – be grateful because this was creepy, but also required me to leave the comfort of my home.

While Tabitha and I were at the school, nothing particularly peculiar happened, but both of us got weird feelings at different times. Tabitha had said on multiple occasions throughout the evening it had felt as if someone had touched her. As in put their hand on her arm to grab her attention or something along those lines. I on the other hand just kept hearing weird noises.

We both experienced weird and dramatic shifts of temperature in rooms. Like, that is not odd enough. All the bathroom doors were open, and I guess that is really irregular. Naturally, I said we should check it out because that’s what we came there to do. While investigating, we came across a stall door that was closed.

Both of us thinking that it wasn’t locked or anything, I jokingly turned to Tabitha and told her she should check inside the stall. In the moment she decided to be brave, or as brave as possible. The moment she went to nudge it open with her foot and it did not budge? I can’t describe how fast I made it out that bathroom, leaving Tabitha to deal with the findings herself.

In the end we never did find out why that one lonely stall was locked. I made up some ridiculous story to freak Tabitha out about how the ghost of the janitor or kid were in there, but in reality, I’m sure some kid thought it would be funny to lock the door from the inside and crawl out.



Editorial: What does it mean to be an adult?

Thursday, October 4th, 2018

Whether college students or high school students are living with their parents still, the parent or parents will often make the son or daughter pay rent and help them get ready for the real world.

This is a great thing to do and will help them know how to handle money, and what to spend on their need and wants.

If the parent knows that, say their son, is in college, they will often make him not pay rent.

There are, however, students that pay for their car, phone, other utilities, and also help out with groceries at home.

Just like how a regular adult would pay for all the things that they own, so the student should be able to the same right?

Yes, if a college student is unaware on how to spend money, they should either teach themselves, have a family member teach them, or read Pablo Sanchez’s regular money-saving-app stories in this newspaper.

Or just go on YouTube and watch tutorial videos on how to do these things, and who doesn’t like watching YouTube?

Stop blaming the schools for not teaching how to do all the things adults do.

Seriously, grow up and stop blaming the education system and take the time to learn how to write out a check, or set up a bank account, without the need of the parent doing it for you.

Our parents didn’t have classes to show them how to do everything. They learned a lot of this on their own

They won’t always be there to help out. It’s better to figure this stuff out now than in your late 40s.

Registering to vote made easy without human interaction

Thursday, October 4th, 2018

With everything that is going on with our government, I decided it would be a good idea to finally register to vote.

Sadly, I had not been able to vote in the last presidential election, because I didn’t turn 18 until after voter registration had closed.

So I took it upon myself to register to show you fellow youngsters that it doesn’t take that long at all.

For those of you who don’t want to deal with other humans, like me, you don’t even have to leave the comfort of your home or dorm room to complete it.

One of my main reasons for not wanting to register was that I thought I would have to go to the courthouse and deal with people.

But it is as easy as picking up your phone or laptop, going online to and completing the following four simple steps.

These are the steps you must complete in the online voter registration process.

1. Verify your voting eligibility.

2. Verify that you have a valid driver’s license or non-driver’s identification card.

3. Enter your personal information.

4. Review and submit your information.

The process was so simple and easy to complete it took a total of 11 minutes.

Once it was over, I honestly thought I skipped a step or that I missed something because it was that fast.

After everything was done I found myself feeling pretty proud of myself.

It doesn’t seem like a big deal to most, but it is just one of those steps to becoming an adult that everyone should really do.

Snapchat actually sent out alerts to some of its users that said “Tap to complete registration” and talks about how important it is to register even if it’s just for the preliminaries.

Now when you drag your friends down to your local voting precinct, make sure you do not take a picture of your ballet due to it being illegal.

It’s okay to be proud of yourself for actually contributing to society, just don’t photograph it.

Emily Fehrman is a Pretty Prairie sophomore studying Journalism

Women’s Corner: the leg-shaving hiatus

Thursday, October 4th, 2018

Tabitha Barr

Now that October is here, the fall weather has set in and cooler temperatures are falling upon us.

Most people love this type of weather because it means sweaters, warm drinks and the upcoming holidays.

Those are great and all, but a perk of cooler weather is being able to wear long pants. Which means the action of shaving my legs becomes forgotten.

My legs will look like Bigfoot’s in no time, and they will most likely stay that way unless a special situation arises.

Shaving my legs is probably something I dread the most in my life. As a woman in the United States’ society, I am supposed to be cleanly shaven at all times and should never have my body hair seen by anyone.

Well I am breaking this “rule”, as some might call it, because winter is when my feminine legs turn into manly legs. Long pants sure can make a difference in a person’s life.

Now, many guys might think this is disgusting, but let me tell you something darling, shaving my legs takes more effort than you think.

It is not just something that happens really quick and it’s over with.

If I am going to shave my legs, I am going to do a pristine job, so that it was all worth it in the end. That means I will be shaving my legs for a good hour.

Guys, can you imagine spending two or three times a week for an hour each, shaving your legs because society tells you that it’s what needs to be done?

Because I’m here to tell you that women are as hairy as men. They just have to hide it. And it’s not fun.

Something as simple as leg hair should not be such a big deal to society.

It is one of the most natural things humans have and why should only women be shamed for having it show to the public?

I know there are a lot of models who have broken through the stigma of women and body hair.

I absolutely love this, because it shows that women are human too. That we are not just objects for others to admire, but are a living being who has a body, a brain, and even more.

So if you see a girl this fall whose leg hair is a little bit, or even a lot a bit, long, don’t judge her.

Don’t tell her that it’s gross. All women do it and it is very natural!

Just go about your day, and think of how happy she is that she didn’t have to spend an hour or more taking a razor to the hair on her legs.

Colder weather means a leg shaving hiatus and I am so down for it.

Tabitha Barr is a Nickerson freshman studying Media Communications and Production

The Women’s Corner: #WhyIDidntReport needs to be heard

Friday, September 28th, 2018

Tabitha Barr

This week, I was having a hard time deciding what my topic should be. Every idea that I had was bland.

But lo and behold, that a topic should fall in my lap from someone who’s supposed to set a good example.

The President of the United States tweeted out an angering tweet about sexual assault accusations against Supreme Court justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh. To sum up his tweet, it stated that if the accuser, Christine Ford, was really telling the truth, and that the situation was as bad as she said, that it would have been reported immediately.

This triggered a hashtag that brings the hard core reality to the surface. #WhyIDidntReport is where women are sharing their saddening stories of why they didn’t report their situations of sexual assault. I started reading threads after threads of women’s experiences, and I was heartbroken and angry. Multiple people are coming out with why they didn’t report it to the police, and why they shouldn’t be ridiculed for fear of coming forward.

One tweet stated, “It took me 40yrs to understand that I wasn’t at fault.” Another went on to say, “I’d been conditioned to believe I had asked for it, and that a man’s pleasure is more important than my right to say no.” These reports are so saddening to see because no woman should live in fear of rape, let alone be afraid of coming forward and telling the truth of what really happened.

It’s crazy to me that we live in a society that ignores the pleas of tragedy. I can’t wrap my head around it, because why would it be instinct for humans to think that a person is lying when they say they’ve been sexually assaulted? The big question is why is someone, who is supposed to be a good example and an inspiration to the people, dismissing something he knows nothing about?

As president, the person who holds this position, is there to better our country and help people. However, it doesn’t seem like he cares one bit about women’s rights and the experiences we have to share. But this movement is another way for women and future generations to see what one person’s story can unlock. For all of those who have been wronged, I want to let you know that you are not alone. Women all around the globe are coming forward with their stories and they are making headway in putting those wrongdoers away.

I hope this movement keeps helping those who were too afraid to speak up. Victims deserve to be heard and are gaining headway day-byday. “The Women’s March” on Twitter tweeted, “#WhyIDidntReport • There are too many of these stories. • Too many of us have these stories. • Too many of us have never felt safe to share them. And men like @realDonaldTrump are why.” I couldn’t have said it better myself. The #WhyIDidntReport is making an impact on a global scale. And hopefully one day, with strong and empowering women behind it, this hashtag won’t relate to as many as it does.

Tabitha Barr is a Nickerson freshman studying Media Communications and Production.

Quit this Fortnite garbage; try Call of Duty: Black Ops 4

Friday, September 28th, 2018

“Fortnite Battle Royale” has drawn a lot of attention over the past year, but there is a game that has many gamers excited.

The name of this game is called “Call Of Duty: Black Ops 4”. There is a game mode in “Black Ops” called “Blackout.” It is similar to “Fortnite” without the building. “Black Ops” recently had a private beta, and in order for you to play it you need to buy the game, which costs $60. I think it’s stupid that you have to pay that much when they should just make it open for other players.

Blackout has a total of 100 players, but the company who made the game is called treyarch.

Treyarch is wanting to increase the player count to at least 115 players, while “Fortnite” has 100. “Blackout” has all the famous weapons, even back from “Black Ops” 1, 2 and 3 and fans are happy as ever.

If you played either of the games I had mentioned, treyarch has taken the chance to put the maps that fans love into “Blackout” from firing range, Nuketown, and others as well. They even put the mystery box in from zombies, which will attract the undead, so not only are you fighting other players, you are also fighting off the horde.

That being said, there are vehicles in the game that you can drive, such as quads, helicopter, boats, and many more. Blackout has three different levels of armor. Level 1, level 2 and level 3, is really rare to find, and if you have it, then you’re a god and you can tank bullets. “Call Of Duty: Black Ops 4” is set to release in Oct. 12, and if you enjoyed the series, then this game is for you, instead of playing “Fortnite”, which is for 12-year olds.

Pablo Sanchez is a Hutchinson freshman studying psychology. He loathes Fortnite.