C.T. Corum

    STUDIO, STAGE & SCREEN: Indulge in the ‘Ecocentric’

    by , June, 2017

    Step through the entrance and imme­di­ately your atten­tion is seized by a bright and col­or­ful tree at the cen­ter of the room. You lean in close to dis­cover that the tree is made of Tar­get bags and other recy­cled plastic.

    Swirl to your right to see a sculp­ture of a fish, cre­ated from empty Marl­boro cig­a­rette car­tons and alu­minum Moun­tain Dew cans.

    In the oppo­site cor­ner, you see a sculp­ture of a fox also com­posed of recy­cled material.

    Hang­ing on every wall are pic­tures of wildlife and char­coal draw­ings of seeds. These images mean­der across the wall, cre­at­ing an intrigu­ing mosaic that seizes your imagination.

    Some peo­ple might call these pieces of art eccen­tric. Rather, they are the art­works that make up the “Eco­cen­tric: Art, Ecol­ogy and Engage­ment” exhibit.

    Eco­cen­tric” is on dis­play in the Gor­don Parks Gallery until July 13. This exhi­bi­tion fea­tures the works of Min­nesota artists Mary John­son, Rachel Breen and Miranda Bran­don. You can find the gallery on the third floor of the Library and Learn­ing Cen­ter on the St. Paul campus.

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    Writing a Winning Resume

    by , June, 2017

    How can col­lege stu­dents and grad­u­ates impress employ­ers and get hired for their dream job? Resumes and net­work­ing are the answers

    Resumes are often the first thing a prospec­tive employer sees from a job appli­cant. These one-​page doc­u­ments have the power to land you an inter­view— or get you tossed into the rejec­tion pile.

    With so much rest­ing on your resume, how can you write one that will impress your employer and get you an interview?

    Resume Resources

    Resume Drop-​in Sessions

    Wednes­days, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Library and Learn­ing Cen­ter, St. Paul campu

    No RSVP needed. Bring paper or elec­tronic draft of your resume. Offered by Career Cen­ter and the Cen­ter for Aca­d­e­mic Excel­lence (CAE).

    One-​on-​One Resume Reviews

    Sched­ule per­sonal appoint­ment by email­ing career.center@metrostate.ed

    More tips from the Metro State Career Center

    www​.met​rostate​.edu/​s​t​u​d​e​n​t​/​s​t​u​d​e​n​t​-​s​e​r​v​i​c​e​s​-​s​u​p​p​o​r​t​/​s​t​u​d​e​n​t​-​s​e​r​v​i​c​e​s​/​c​a​r​e​e​r​-​c​e​n​t​e​r​/​c​a​r​e​e​r​-​c​e​n​t​e​r​-​s​t​u​d​e​n​t​s​/​c​r​e​a​t​i​n​g​-​a​-​resum

    Ele­gance is Everything

    Holis­ti­cally, when I first look at a resume, I think the first impres­sion is impor­tant,” said Met­ro­pol­i­tan State pro­fes­sor Quan Zhou, who teaches WRIT 372 Doc­u­ment and Infor­ma­tion Design. “It tells you some­thing about this per­son. Some resumes are clut­tered; other resumes are elegant.

    Resumes give employ­ers a peek into your lifestyle and per­son­al­ity. As a job can­di­date, you have total con­trol over what that employer sees.

    Use clear writ­ing to empha­size your strengths. Resumes should lay out your accom­plish­ments and skills. Hir­ing man­agers do not want to have any ques­tions about your qualifications

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    What’s so Funny? How to Get into Stand-Up Comedy

    by , April, 2017

    You can feel the sweat begin to form on your brow when you step onto the tiny podium. As you approach the micro­phone, you feel the intense heat of the bright lights that are shin­ning down on you. In the audi­ence, all you can see are dark­ened sil­hou­ettes of peo­ple who are wait­ing for some­one to ease their stress­ful lives. You clear your voice.

    What do you say?

    This is a sce­nario that faces all pro­fes­sional come­di­ans, no mat­ter the expe­ri­ence level. Audi­ences may range from a hand­ful of peo­ple to thou­sands of indi­vid­u­als, but the over­all process and prin­ci­ples of standup com­edy remain the same. The goal is always to make the audi­ence laugh, but how do come­di­ans accom­plish this?

    But first, how can stu­dents at Met­ro­pol­i­tan State get involved in standup comedy?

    Ryan Patchin is a stu­dent at Metro State, who plans to grad­u­ate with a major in cre­ative writ­ing. Patchin has done six open mic rou­tines, and he offers his advice for stu­dents who are look­ing to become a stand-​up comic.

    You need that expo­sure,” Patchin said. “You need to get out there as much as you can to get as much expo­sure as possible.”

    This is not only the most impor­tant step to becom­ing a well-​known come­dian, it is also one of the hard­est. Com­mit­ment and ded­i­ca­tion are required for some­one who is seri­ous about becom­ing a comic pro­fes­sion­ally. Agents are known to come to open mics to see if there is any­one tal­ented per­form­ing. If they see some­one they like, then chances are this come­dian will be able to act as a “mid­dle” (buzz­word for one of the open­ing acts) at a show. As the come­dian builds pop­u­lar­ity, he or she can move up to become a fea­ture and then a headline.

    You want to be dis­cov­ered as much as peo­ple want to dis­cover you,” said Patchin.

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    Breaking the Piggy Bank: Why Online Classes Cost More Money Than Traditional Classes

    by , March, 2017

    Met­ro­pol­i­tan State Uni­ver­sity is known for its flex­i­bil­ity. And its abil­ity to accom­mo­date indi­vid­u­als who already lead busy lives and have respon­si­bil­i­ties out­side of school. Metro State is able to do this par­tially by offer­ing online classes.

    How­ever, there is a major flaw with them: online classes cost more than tra­di­tional classes.

    Doing some sim­ple cal­cu­la­tions will show that online courses are about 33 per­cent more expen­sive than tra­di­tional classes. For work­ing adults who are try­ing to jug­gle a career, fam­ily and school, 33 per­cent more for col­lege can be a big deal. Why is there such a large price difference?

    There are a lot of things that go on behind the scenes,” said Robert Bilyk, the direc­tor of the Cen­ter for Online Learning.

    Accord­ing to Bilyk, Metro State pays mul­ti­ple expenses when offer­ing online courses. Some of these costs include pay­ment for the Cen­ter for Online Learn­ing, pay­ment to cor­po­ra­tions like D2L Bright­space and expenses devel­op­ing new classes. Each of these expen­di­tures is nec­es­sary to keep online classes run­ning and work­ing smoothly.

    Bilyk quotes the Cen­ter for Online Learn­ing as being the largest expense. The Cen­ter for Online Learn­ing is staffed with mul­ti­ple indi­vid­u­als whose job is to develop new online instruc­tional tech­niques and help online courses run efficiently.

    In addi­tion to this, Metro State must pay for D2L, a cor­po­ra­tion that offers a learn­ing plat­form designed to help instruc­tors and stu­dents inter­act online. Sites like D2L force uni­ver­si­ties to increase online class tuition.

    Devel­op­ing the course itself takes up time and resources. Each year, Metro State offers new online courses. Because of this, they are required to hire per­son­nel who have the abil­ity to develop these new courses. “Pro­fes­sors are paid to teach, not to learn new soft­ware,” said Bilyk.

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    Strike Three: Why sports are non-existent at Metro State

    by , February, 2017

    The Foot­ball Foun­da­tion states that there was close to 2 mil­lion view­ers who watched the col­lege foot­ball games aired dur­ing 2015. In a lit­tle more than a month, March Mad­ness, a col­lege bas­ket­ball tour­na­ment con­sid­ered to be one of the biggest sport­ing events in the US, will dom­i­nate pub­lic con­ver­sa­tions and social media sites. Thou­sands of fans will put together their brack­ets and watch the games. Even with all this pop­u­lar­ity, there are a small num­ber of col­leges that refuse to par­tic­i­pate in the may­hem. Met­ro­pol­i­tan State is one of them.

    The rea­son we don’t have sports at Metro has to do with the gen­e­sis of the uni­ver­sity,” said Phil Fuehrer, the direc­tor of Stu­dent Life and Lead­er­ship Devel­op­ment. Metro State is unique from other uni­ver­si­ties because it appeals to a non-​traditional stu­dent group. It is com­prised largely of adults between 24 and 35 years old. These stu­dents usu­ally lead busy lives and have com­mit­ments to their fam­i­lies and careers. This is very dif­fer­ent from most uni­ver­si­ties where stu­dents attend full-​time and have the free­dom to par­tic­i­pate in sports.

    Most sports are not money mak­ers,” Fuehrer said. When look­ing at sports, a uni­ver­sity has to pur­chase and main­tain a facil­ity, a staff of coaches, a direc­tor, team uni­forms, and observe dif­fer­ent reg­u­la­tions, such as Title 9. This title states that with each male team there must also be a respec­tive female team. This absence of sports at Metro State def­i­nitely denies stu­dents a sense of uni­fied cul­ture and com­radery out­side of the class­room. How­ever, the admis­sion of sports would cause major finan­cial prob­lems to the infra­struc­ture of the university.

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    Little Scientists

    by , December, 2016
    Kids participating in a First Saturday Science Program. A Demonstration

    I saw a need. There were plenty of arts– and sports-​related com­mu­nity pro­grams, but noth­ing for sci­ence,” said Nathan Fell, who is a sci­ence teacher at Ram­sey Mid­dle School. Fell, along with the Stu­dent Sci­ence Asso­ci­a­tion, saw a need for sci­ence in the com­mu­nity in St. Paul, and cre­ated the “First Sat­ur­day Sci­ence” pro­gram. This pro­gram occurs the first Sat­ur­day of every month, and is located at the Dayton’s Bluff Library at Met­ro­pol­i­tan State Uni­ver­sity. The pur­pose of the First Sat­ur­day Sci­ence pro­gram is to expose chil­dren in under­rep­re­sented com­mu­ni­ties to sci­ence, and to present it as a real­is­tic career choice for girls and peo­ple of color. The pro­gram focuses on shap­ing the com­mu­nity and help­ing nur­ture and instill a love of sci­ence into children.

    Each month marks a dif­fer­ent theme for sci­ence explo­ration, and any school-​aged sci­en­tist is wel­come to par­tic­i­pate. The top­ics range from ecol­ogy and the study of how dif­fer­ent organ­isms relate with their phys­i­cal sur­round­ings to food and dif­fer­ent chem­i­cal reac­tions that can occur. When asked about par­tic­i­pa­tion, Fell stated that “kids should get involved for a num­ber of rea­sons.” To which he added, “It’s free, it’s hands-​on, and you get to keep what you build. Every fam­ily also gets a free book.”

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