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Something to Talk About Personal notes and news.

Chaucey Something To Talk About
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  • CCU students, profs join anniversary march on Washington

    October 18 2013

    By Hephzibah Strmic-Pawl and students

    Two Coastal Carolina University sociology professors and 20 students traveled to Washington, D.C., on Aug. 27 for the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. The march was in honor of the original 1963 event when nearly 300,000 people gathered on the Mall to demand equal rights and push forward the Civil Rights Act of 1964. It was also the historic day that civil rights leader Martin Luther King gave his “I Have a Dream” speech.

    Deborah Perkins, associate professor of sociology, and Hephzibah Strmic-Pawl, assistant professor of sociology, accompanied the students.

    "If hundreds of thousands of marginalized people could make it to D.C. from all over the country to march for equality, we certainly can spend the night in a van to honor them,” the students wrote.

    "On the steps of Georgetown Law School, elders who participated in the march 50 years earlier were honored. They partnered with students from Alabama State in a symbolic passing of the torch to a new generation to continue the fight for justice and equality. We then marched alongside a diverse group of people for a mile and a half through downtown.

    People from all generations marched, regardless of whether or not they could actually take the steps themselves; marchers pushed elder generations in wheelchairs and perched young children on their shoulders until we reached the mall.

    Our last rally point was in front of the Lincoln Memorial where the original 1963 marchers also gathered to call for justice. There was a series of speeches delivered from a range of dignitaries and leaders.

    We came away from the March with a range of emotions, thoughts and experiences. Raven Vaught, senior psychology major, realized that we’ve made progress but feels we still have a long way to go. Ali Cohen, junior education major, wondered what type of venues need to be created to foster conversation about creating change. Shawnte Posley, sophomore psychology major, reflected that if the 1960s generation could successfully counter what they went through, then we can definitely fight for equality now. And Bridget Kelly, senior sociology major, realized that we still do not live in a post racial world despite some of us not experiencing prejudice ourselves. 

    As we drove the seven hours back to Coastal Carolina University after the March, we all discussed what we would like CCU to do and to be to promote equality and justice. Many students reflected on their own student organizations and how those could be made more inclusive and more effective. Others thought about new courses they might want to take, including courses offered through the social justice concentration within the sociology major. And, importantly, there was inspiration for a new student organization, The Activism Initiative, which promotes an activist climate on campus by mobilizing already existing clubs who want to actively participate in fostering change."

    The trip was sponsored and made possible by the Social Justice Research Initiative, the College of Science, and the Department of Psychology and Sociology.

  • Wall Connections event a great success

    October 25 2013

    By Wendi Lee

    The annual Wall College Connections event, a signature event hosted by the E. Craig Wall Sr. College of Business Administration with the purpose of inspiring students by introducing them to young, successful business leaders, took place on Tuesday, Oct. 15. The theme of this year’s event was Entrepreneurship and Innovation: Turning an Inspiration into a Vocation. The event consisted of a variety of discussions, sessions, a poster competition and a keynote speech.

    "My time spent at Coastal Carolina University was one of the most inspiring days of my entire year,” said Brent Freeman, the dynamic and philanthropic founder and CEO of, an online shopping platform geared toward fashion-conscious individuals who want to make a difference through the products they purchase.

    “The whole campus vibe – from staff to students to professors and back – is authentically committed to and excited about social change and sustainability. They truly are a shining example of how social entrepreneurship should be woven into the DNA of a student's experience while in college and are, without a doubt, helping prepare an inspiring group of future leaders for our society," he said.

    This year, the Wall College partnered with The Big Read, QEP, Beta Gamma Sigma and University College to put on the event.

    Other successful entrepreneurs also participated in a panel discussion, along with Freeman, and individual breakout sessions. The entrepreneurs included Blake Sloan, founder/CEO of Sloan Realty Group, who was featured in Forbes Magazine Top 30 Under 30; Dennis Andrew, co-owner of NNOS Studios, Adoration LLC, The Weathered Rock and Coffee Cave; and Todd Woodard, CEO of SiteTech Systems, an independent research and analysis company that serves the real estate and housing industry.

    Sessions touched on topics such as healthcare, the economics of shark finning, and ticket pricing and attendance at sporting events. There was also a student poster competition held in the Wall Boardroom, where students presented business ideas in a poster format. Each student was briefly interviewed by faculty, staff, fellow students and the judges of the competition, and the winners were Christina Martinetti, first place; Harold Worley, second place; and Ashley Goodman, third place.


  • Water refill stations have positive impact

    October 31 2013

    As Kermit the Frog once said, “It’s not easy being green.” Jennifer Sellers, Coastal Carolina University’s sustainability coordinator, would likely disagree with the famous amphibian.

    According to her estimate, CCU’s commitment to sustainability has resulted in avoiding the use of more than 640,000 bottles of disposable water bottles. Sellers believes the water stations have been making an impact in the CCU community in other ways as well.

    “This program is a huge success not only for our sustainability efforts, but also in helping people save money by not purchasing bottled water,” she says.

    According to the numbers provided by CCU’s Office of Contractual and Business Services, 5, 270 cases of bottled water were sold in 2010. In 2011, that number fell to 3,888, and even further in 2012 to 3,190. So far this year, only 1,684 cases of bottled water have been sold.

    Sellers also says the water refill stations are having a positive effect on the environment. According to national data, more than 50 million bottles of water are sold in the U.S. annually, with 12 percent of them being recycled.

    “The water bottle refill stations not only help to reduce waste from single-use disposable plastic water bottles, they also encourage staff, faculty and students to be more environmentally friendly,” she says.

    Denise Paster, an assistant professor of English at CCU, has become more eco friendly since the water stations began appearing in 2011.

    “I use the water stations daily and think they are great,” she says. “They are so much more convenient than holding my water bottle sideways under a traditional fountain, trying to get it as full as possible before water spills out. This is a simple and helpful sustainability initiative that can really make a difference.”

    To date 39 stations have been placed across campus. Plans to increase those numbers are in the works, with possible locations including the Burroughs and Chapin Center for Marine  and Wetland Studies building, the Student Health Center and the Band Hall.