Our ocean could be charging our batteries next

By Bryan Donoghue
Flapjack staff

The light chatter clouded the room, filling the atmosphere with insightful speculation from the spectators. Everyone’s anticipation made it feel as if though a curtain was about to be drawn back, as a lackluster light illuminated the room. The room started off with only six people, but within just a few minutes 121 seats were filled to capacity. The title of the presentation was displayed on the screen, “State of the Science on Environmental Issues and Marine Renewable Energy”, the room became silent, and everyone was ready to begin. This is the environment presented at an HSU Sustainable Future Speaker Series. Speaking was Sharon Kramer; a principal at H.T. Harvey and associates, with more than 25 years of experience in aquatic ecology and fisheries biology.

“You can use water as a source for Marine renewable energy,” she began.

The business of renewable energy is increasing as transition movements wanting 100 percent water, wind, and solar become more popular. This is opening up opportunities for other renewable resources too. Kramer reminds us that California is still only at about 50 percent of renewable energy resource use. Seawater provides a plentiful, easy to use renewable energy that harnesses the power of marine hydro-kinetic energy, the powerful push and pull of the waves, and currents underneath. Casey Tucker, a 20-year-old environmental resource engineer student at HSU believes that wind and tidal renewable energy has benefit to the future, “they are the future. Solar power doesn’t work all the time, such as in cloudy areas, so having an alternative is great,” he said.

Kramer says the industry is getting progressively more expensive as well because its currently still under development.  This is partly because the industry is working on putting turbines off shore. Kramer gave a great example with surge devices.

“These are very interesting,” she said. “There’s no power cable, but the turbine on land collects energy from the movement in the waves.”  Surge devices are becoming more popular, along with a large variety of other renewable energy devices used in marine environments.

The marine environmental impacts are worrying students and scientists alike. Cedar Kuplenk, a 20-year-old student in natural resources, is worried about the microscopic organic life that is the lifeline to our oceans food chain.

“I’d be most worried about coastal degradation,” he said, “especially considering the increasing acidity to the ocean, the phytoplankton are in a lot of trouble.”

Kramer touched on the subject as well, giving examples: ropes between moorings could get tangled, lighting from the devices could negatively effect bird behavior and the marine life that navigates on magnetic fields.

Kramer ended on a positive note. It will take about 10 years, but once more test sites and standardizing devices are put in place this renewable energy will be closer to becoming a national resource.

Group advances equity on campus, community

By Arthur Andrew
Flapjack staff

A diverse group of all races and ages sit attentively in the Kate Buchanan Room in the middle of many busy work and school schedules to discuss a very important issue at HSU and the nation right now. Over the next 15 months the Equity Alliance of the North Coast will be leading training sessions at HSU to lead improvements in racial and social equity. On Sept. 19 Julia Nelson, Dwayne S. Marsh, and Brenda Anibarro led a discussion and workshop on Advancing Equity through a Racial Lens: Putting Theory into Action.

“Racial inequities are a norm across the country,” stated Julia Nelson who is the Senior Vice-President for the Center for Social Inclusion and director of the Government Alliance on Race and Equity. With decades of experience working towards social equity, Nelson explained how she got involved working towards racial equity as a white woman. “I became a young activist in college after being sexually assaulted my first week of school,” said Nelson. The room became totally silent and all attention was placed on Nelson’s next words. Nelson explained how her experience led her to become active with others preventing violence against women. Through numerous trainings and hearing the stories of others, Nelson discovered the areas of marginalization in all areas of society. “Some of the worst racial inequity exists in places that identify as progressive,” explained Nelson, showing the importance of advancing equity on campus and in the community.

As Vice-President of Strategic Partnerships for the Center for Social Inclusion as well as Deputy Director for Government Alliance on Race and Equity, sociologist Dwayne S. Marsh led the attendees through a fun, eye opening activity. Marsh asked the audience questions such as “Are people who engage in public meetings are the ones who care most about the issues?” and “Should hiring and promotion decisions should be based solely on merit?” while grouping individuals into those who agreed, disagreed, or were on the fence. Asking individuals why they agreed or disagreed allowed participants to share their views while highlighting on the institutionalization of inequity present in so many dominant social systems today. “90% of people say they want to have conversations with their neighbors about race,” stated Marsh. “90% of people say their neighbors are not ready.” When we normalize the conversations around race, we can begin to operationalize and organize.

HSU sociology major Zachary Kihm attended the event on Monday and found many of the tools mentioned very helpful.

“Employing the “racial equity tool” was interesting to hear about and did illustrate how the several stages of society – community, local government and institutions, and larger government and institution – are to work together,” Kihm explained. “But my fear is that bureaucracies will eventually take charge which is not good.” Just which direction these events will take the campus and community is exciting in itself. There are more events planned within the next few months. Hopefully, the number of participants will increase and the conversations continue to expand. To find out the schedule for more free events at HSU visit http://www.hafoundation.org/Community-Leadership/EquityNorthCoast.

Indigenous anti-dam activists show solidarity at HSU

By Kelly Bessem
Flapjack Staff

An historic moment in Humboldt State’s Native American forum occurred on Tuesday, Sept. 13, when young tribal members from the Klamath region met with indigenous community members from Sarawak, Malaysia to show solidarity in anti-dam activism around the world.

The Indigenous River Defenders forum came in the wake of success at both localities– the official Klamath River dam removal deal and the cancellation of the Baram Dam in Sarawak.

The Klamath dam removal signed April 7 of this year is set to be the largest dam removal project ever seen in the United States. Action that profound is needed to prevent the massive fish die-offs in the tens of thousands seen in past years, and the toxic algae growth that forces closure of the river to pets and humans every year.

“Having all of those people here with different parts of the same story has been profoundly meaningful,” said Judith Mayer, one of the major organizers of the forum.

Mayer is an HSU Environmental Planning professor and one of the original founders of the Borneo Project, which uses community-led efforts to protect human rights and environmental integrity in Borneo. She was honored to help put together a space for indigenous communities from two opposite sides of the world to exchange experiences firsthand.

“The important thing is that stories came out in people’s own voices but as one story,” said Mayer. “All of our diverse stories are part of the same story.”

Yurok tribe members from the Klamath River region feel strongly about this international connection, and have traveled to places such as the Amazon and Malaysia to stand in solidarity with others resisting dams.

Struggle could be heard in the voice of Hoopa Tribal member Dania Rose Colegrove-Powell, who had just returned from a Standing Rock protest in the Dakotas, as she shared her experiences with the global struggle of the indigenous.

The legacy of indigenous oppression was felt when Sammy Gensaw III, 22, explained how– though hidden in the background of U.S. history– genocide fragmented his family tree and still affects his Yurok family to this day. There was respect and intense attention coming from everyone in the room.

“It’s our job to allow the world to be what it wants to be and allow things to run smoothly,” said Gensaw III.

He said he’s seen the progress that’s possible when people take control of the fight for a better future. By bringing activists together through forming Klamath Ancestral Guard, he spread understanding of the Klamath dam issue throughout the region and was an important part of the successful push to remove the dams. He reminds everyone that we all need to get out and do our part.

 Forum speaker Rebekah Shirley, a UC Berkeley graduate student, explained how her and the director of the Renewable and Appropriate Energy Lab, Dr. Daniel Kammen, put together a report entitled Kampung Capacity: Local Solutions for Sustainable Rural Energy in the Baram River Basin that proved megadams are not the solution. This report has given many rural areas the backing they need for their anti-dam arguments.

Peter Kallang, director of the SAVE-Rivers, a group which also spreads awareness about dam effects throughout the local community in Sarawak, spoke about how media coverage of issues was also effective in capturing the attention of politicians.

He and the other Sarawak activists have remained upbeat despite having to face censorship, prison, and even murder. This is due to the sense of kinship and collective struggle they find when among their “river relatives,” like those who welcomed them into the Klamath region.

A copy of the forum can be checked out at the HSU library by anyone wanting to better understand the many amazing stories shared there.

Lumberjacks football team loses first home game in two years

By Sharrod Richard
Flapjack staff

It was a cold night physically and literally speaking. The Humboldt State Lumberjacks have been undefeated in the Redwood Bowl in Arcata for two years consecutively. So when the Cougars of Azusa Pacific University (Pasedena) came to town Sept. 10, most if not all of the Humboldt state fan base thought that the Lumberjacks would get the job done.

HSU athletics camera man Joey Marmolejo, a senior, said that this was one of the most heartbreaking losses he has seen in a long time.

” I was so happy going into this game thinking that Jaquan and our team would just beat the crap out of APU,” Marmolejo said. “But after the first interception in the fourth quarter by Robert Webber, I just knew it was over and felt pressure in my chest from the heart felt loss.”

Coming into this 2016 football season, HSU had a lot to boast about being that they were returning two D2footbal.com preseason All-Americans in Jaquan Gardner (First Team) and Alex Cappa (Second Team) and returning six offensive starters from the 2015 GNAC Champion team. That’s why HSU fans were so sure that the Lumberjacks would win at home Saturday, September 10 on that cold night.

The Azusa Pacific Cougars and Humboldt State University Lumberjacks are not new opponents. The two teams has shared a rivalry since APU joined the GNAC in 2011. The two teams are the only two  football teams standing in  Division 2 football  which is crucial in recruiting season. A lot of the two teams players  know each other from high school or junior college so the rivalry is thick.

Juwuan Murphy, Redshirt Freshman(#6), said that he knows a couple of the guys on the other team so the social media tension was high before the game. He doesn’t even want to check his social media outlets for a while.

” I went to school with Scooby, you know the running back, in high school so I knew he was smiling ear to ear,” Murphy said. ” I told him on Twitter that we would beat them by 20 points or better, but we ended up losing 38-27 , so look who had the last laugh.”

Coach Rob Smith looked disgusted after the game and rushed to the locker room right after being interviewed by ESPN radio, Lumberjack newspaper and then HSU  athletic website. The Flapjack crew was not able to catch up with him in the tense and sad moments. But we were able to get a quote from him on the school’s website.

“We’ll learn from this loss,” said Smith. “That’s the great thing; we will be better through these tough games, and there is a ton of football still to be played. We are going to be in every game we play, I promise everyone that. We have to find a way at the end of these close games to make plays. Last week we did, this week we weren’t as fortunate. It stings and it hurts, but we will come back.” ( Quarters, B.)

Quarters, B. (n.d.). Turnovers Prove Costly as Cougars Top Jacks. Retrieved September 14, 2016, from http://www.hsulumberjacks.com/news/2016/9/11/football-turnovers-prove-costly-as-cougars-top-jacks.aspx

Opportunites are endless with ELITE Scholars

By Priscilla Galindo
Flapjack staff

Students began to shuffle into Nelson Hall Room 112. It’s the first club meeting of the semester. These students identify as ELITE scholars, Excelling and Living Independently Through Education. ELITE scholars is a club on campus geared towards helping former foster youth/ independent students navigate their way through college.

Adrienne Colgrove-Raymond, coordinator of ITEPP & Elite Scholars ELITE, brings the meeting to a start.

“It’s going to be a great year, we have a lot to look forward to,to overcome the barriers facing their post-secondary education,” said Colgrove-Raymond. A few years back Colegrove-Raymond was approached by a few students at HSU wondering if there were any programs for former foster youth, she says. She asked around and everyone told her no. She was then given the opportunity to work with students to create a program that would eventually become the ELITE scholars today.

More than 100 students identify as former foster youth or independent by exception at HSU. The club has five students who come regularly to the Friday meetings but are looking at ways to reach out to more of the students because the club has a lot to offer that many may not be aware of.

The program has liaisons from seven pertinent university departments in overcoming the barriers facing their post-secondary education. Those liaisons are in Admission, Educational Opportunity Program/Student Support Services, Disabled Support Services, Counseling & Psychology Services, Financial Aid, Registrar and Housing departments.

“I have solicited funding to assist ELITE Scholars to find on and off campus jobs that are related to their major and/or career goals,” says Shaylynne Masten, a recent HSU grad student and current regional foster youth liaison for ELITE shares with the members of the club.

“I love coming to meetings because it gives me a safe space to share my story and gives me opportunities I didn’t believe were possible,” says Christina Cole, a senior in Social Work major at HSU. Cole shares that in the past ELITE was able to pay her way to a social work conference where she was able to learn practical things about her field.

In the past, ELITE was also able to send their students to New York, Arizona, and a few other places to look at grad schools. Colegrove-Raymond reminds the members that if there is something “related to your field of work” to come speak with her and they will try to make it happen.

“ELITE has helped me a lot and not just academically but personally,” says Starr GreenSky, a 21-year-old transfer student. “I wish we were a bigger group because we could really do some good.” She says she hopes that there will be more programs like ELITE for her younger siblings.

ELITE scholars meet weekly on Fridays mostly in Nelson Hall, although the particular room number changes, all former foster youth, and students that identify as independent by exception are welcome to join and may reach out to Adrienne Colegrove-Raymond and Shaylynee Masten for further information. They have set Oct 28 as a tentative date for their Welcome Back Gathering. They will be having a scary movie night, dinner, pumpkin carving, and costume party. Everyone is welcome.