On this site, you will find all of the Viking Fusion content prior to July 2018. For current content, visit vikingfusion.com.
Sophomore Emma Chambers overcomes visual disorder to enjoy the game that she loves.
Lauren Richardson, COM 353 Reporter
The general store from 1932 is now a resale store, run by the granddaughters of the original owner.
Allie Pritchett, Viking Fusion Executive Director
Restoration Rome, with assistance from Berry College Leadership Fellow students, is serving the community of Rome through aiding in the foster care process
Ben Lord, Reagan Whisenant and Brianna Black, COM 250 Reporters
Haley Edmondson, COM 303 Editor
Hannah Draut, Amberlee Williams and Faith McElvery, COM 250 Reporters
Hallie Marie McErlain and Bri Greyling, COM 303 Editors
The new expansion to Broad Street, Jerusalem Grill Express
Emily Reid, Nancy Belle Hansford, Ashley Mancuso and Yeji Han, COM 250 Reporters
Camille DeBrun, COM 303 Editor
Looking at costuming, set building, and props in BCTC
Samantha Warner, Jordan Leitch, Mercedes Smith and Matthew McConnell, COM 250 Reporters
Ashley Foreman and Isabelle Ryerson, COM 303 Editors
International Experiences and their new online program
AJ O’Brien, Alexander Mitropoulos, Heitor De Paula and Nathan Sims, COM 250 Reporters
Bailey Newhouse, COM 303 Editor
Heitor De Paula, COM 250 Reporter
MOUNT BERRY, Ga.- Berry College will introduce the new Service Fellows Scholarship for five upcoming freshmen in the fall of 2018 to begin building the program.
Berry College administration wants a group of hardworking students that will make a difference by using Berry College’s motto which says, “Not to be ministered unto, but to minister.” The Service Fellows Scholarship will recognize high school students for extraordinary service and leadership in their community.
Berry College’s administration will take one-fourth of the Leadership Fellows Scholarship’s funding in the fall of 2018, so additional money will not be required. The scholarship amount will be $3,000 for the freshman year, $4,000 for the sophomore year, $5,000 for the junior year and $6,000 for the senior year.
Director of Service Fellows Lindsey Taylor said she wants future Service Fellows students to display commitment, consistency and meet requirements beyond expectations. Based on the interviews that took place on Feb. 17, 2018, Taylor said it will be easy to choose the five Service Fellows students.
The freshman and sophomore year of the Service Fellows will revolve around the history of service at Berry College and self-discovery through volunteering. The junior and senior year will be based on understanding the community as well as how to lead and create change within volunteer management.
Service Fellows students will model the basic requirements and expectations of Leadership Fellows students, but they are still different in terms of responsibilities. The recipients of the Service Fellow scholarship will focus on why service is important.
Several Leadership Fellow students and Bonner scholarship students oppose the idea of the Service Fellows Scholarship.
“The creation of a new scholarship caught us by surprise,” Leadership Fellows student Reagan Whisenant said. “We also were not told that spots from our scholarship were going to be used to fund Service Fellows. I just wish we would have been more informed ahead of time, especially before we interviewed upcoming freshmen for the scholarship.”
“We are still working through how they will be overlap and how there will be separation between the two scholarships,” Director of Leadership Fellows Cecily Crow said.
“The Service Fellows Scholarship will be a lot different from the Bonner Scholarship,” Taylor said. “Bonner students get plugged in immediately into the community, while the Service Fellows students will work in the Berry College Volunteer Services office to understand the needs of Berry’s volunteer partners.”
In spring semester of 2019, the Service Fellows Scholarship will have their own application and interview process. The number of students chosen for the Service Fellows Scholarship will increase.
Administration plans to stop distributing the funding from the Leadership Fellows Scholarship and to rename financial aid for additional Service Fellows students in the future.
Cassie LaJeunesse, Campus Carrier Deputy News Editor
Junior Sarah Cooper was one of 211 students in the country to be awarded the 2018 Barry Goldwater Scholarship. This scholarship is a prestigious award for undergraduate research in science, engineering and mathematics.
Colleges across the country are asked to nominate one undergraduate researcher to apply for the scholarship. Cooper was nominated because she has worked with Dominic Qualley, associate professor of biochemistry, in his research on the bovine leukemia virus since her sophomore year.
According to Cooper, the application process involved a three-page research paper, essays and letters of recommendation. Assistant Professor of Chemistry Mark Turlington assisted her through the process.
“I kind of knew [the scholarship] was a big deal, but I’m learning that it’s even a bigger deal than I anticipated,” Cooper said. “I’m super excited for Berry to promote that and have younger scientists come here and see how awesome our work program is, and our sciences and our research program, because we’re doing awesome stuff.”
Cooper is excited that the prestige of the award will bring recognition to Berry’s science programs and allow the research to continue.
“Berry is actually giving our lab more funding, which is incredible,” Cooper said. “It’s awesome that Berry has been so supportive and they understand how big of a deal this is for the science community.”
Cooper plans to continue her research throughout the summer and her senior year as her Honors thesis and senior capstone project. She also said that the award will open up a lot of graduate school opportunities for her. This summer, she hopes to start looking at graduate programs in the biochemistry field.
Jamison Guice, Campus Carrier Staff Writer
The 2018 freshman class has begun paying deposits for the 2018 academic year. With each upcoming class, Berry finds new faces and backgrounds to welcome to the community.
Andrew Bressette, Vice President for Enrollment Management, said that student deposits are how the department can begin to estimate the number of students.
Bressette said that the number of applicants is an unreliable representation of the student body since it serves only to express interest in attending Berry. Once a student pays a deposit, however, become a committed member of the Berry community.
“There are currently 363 deposits,” Bressette said. “Last year at this time we had 399 deposits.”
Since the students have until mid-May to make a deposit, the current amount can still increase. Bressette said that the number of applicants, acceptances and FAFSA completions have all increased from 2017.
“In the recent years, high school seniors seem to take longer to make up their minds and decide where they want to go,” Bressette said. “This year is continuing that same pattern.”
Bressette said that it is not uncommon for deposits to seem low at this point in the year. He said that the low rates stem from students picking the right financial aid package, financial aid appeals and the right college. Specifically, Bressette said that female deposits are lower than male at this time.
To encourage students to come to Berry and consequently finalize their decision, a campaign began in Spring 2018. The campaign was called “Letter to Home” and featured Berry juniors and graduating seniors writing about their personal and professional lives. The letters explained why each student personally chose Berry and how it contributed to their development.
“Deans and department chairs were asked to nominate students that were thought to have good engagement and good stories to share,” Bressette said. “We tried to make sure we were choosing a breadth of different programs and a balance of gender and diversity.”
The student writers that were nominated represented different experiences and life paths. The intention was to make sure the reader could visualize themselves at Berry when reading the letter. By including a variety of writers, he wants to target applicants that have not yet decided and raise deposit rates.
Kendall Aronson, Campus Carrier Asst. Arts & Living Editor
Finals Fest has made changes in their activities lineup this year in an effort to create a better experience for students. The event will be taking place on Saturday, April 21 from 6-9 p.m.
Finals Fest was created in 2016, combining Exam Jam and the Block Party into one cohesive night. It is the second biggest event on campus of the year, following Marthapalooza.
This year, Finals Fest will feature the bands Grizfolk and Nightly. There will also be many different activities that will be taking place as the bands perform, such as a hot air balloon, stunt jump, laser tag, inflatables, hungry hippos, jousting and DIY activities. The DIY activities will include a succulent booth, flower crowns, dream catchers and tie-dye. It is recommended that students bring a small bag to hold any items they create, or to be prepared to drop items off in their cars or dorms during the event. There will also be food options offered at the event, including authentic Mexican tacos, Kona Ice, Tornado Potatoes and funnel cake.
Everything will be free during the event except for the t-shirts. The shirts can be purchased for $6 for the white tank top and $10 for the blue comfort colors. This can be paid for through a student account. Volunteers will get shirts free.
This year, the Finals Fest Committee hopes to have the event feel more like a music festival. The bands will be playing outside for the duration of the event, and students can enjoy their food as they sit on blankets outside. They can also take breaks to do the other activities which are being offered.
Senior Kristian Willingham is the committee chair for Finals Fest this year, and she has overseen a lot of the decision-making and planning that goes into designing this large event.
“This year, we scaled back and got a less expensive artist than we have had in the past so we could spend more money on events and things to do there,” Willingham said. “In the future, if it is a really popular event, the budget might be bigger so they might have more opportunity to bring a more expensive artist that is more well-known. That just depends on how successful the event is this year, and really in the next five years.”
Willingham wanted to focus on branding this year, which will give Finals Fest more stability and consistency for years to come.
“Our goal this year has really been to brand the event and give students expectations like they have with Marthapalooza,” Willingham said. “We want to brand a logo and maybe to bring the hot air balloon every year. That’s what our goal has been this year: to really narrow down on our focus.”
The committee has been planning Finals Fest since October, but most of the preparation took place this semester. This year’s preparation has been easier than years past because the committee has a better idea of what they want the event to look like.
Sophomore Katie Ott is on the marketing committee, which is one of many committees that make Finals Fest successful. Each committee brings ideas to the whole group and is in charge of executing them.
“For marketing, we’ve done a lot of work in preparation for the event,” Ott said. “We’ve made posters and t-shirts, and we are in charge of running the tie-dye event. Other committees are in charge of getting contracts with vendors, and different fun elements that will be at Finals Fest.”
Everyone on all the committees comes together to choose which artists will perform and what color the t-shirts will be. There will be a tie-dye event on the Krannert Lawn from 5-7 p.m. on Thursday April 19 to promote the event.
“(Finals Fest is) a great way to de-stress,” Ott said. “This year we’re offering a lot of different things that I think everyone will have something to enjoy. We have a lot of great food vendors and activities, and it’s just a fun thing for everybody.”
John Catton, Campus Carrier Features Editor
Leo Narrison, Campus Carrier Asst. Features Editor
John Catton | CAMPUS CARRIER Senior Dexter Serrao explains his solution to making ride-sharing more accessible within the local community.
It’s late Friday night in the Hackberry lab. Students powered by Sprite and pizza, seek to find creative solutions to common problems facing the Rome community.
The event is Berry College’s latest Hackathon, but with a twist: it lasts 24 hours, the first in school history.
“Berry has done 4- hour Hackathons in the past, but never one this long before,” Zane Cochran, Instructor of Creative Technology said, “Seeing how far our students can take an idea in 24 hours is really encouraging.”
The event was sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Augusta University, and with local partners in Rome through Makervillage Inc.
The purpose of the Hackathons is to allow students to find creative solutions to local challenges such as water use, car sharing, and making exercise fun.
These categories were generated after local leaders used public health records to find challenges facing the Rome community.
Junior Graham Wildmann works on programming his idea of using a bike as a video game controller to combat inactivity.
“Physical environment and physical inactivity are Rome’s biggest challenges,” Tricia Steele, president and co founder of Makervillage INC, said. “We are very good at clinical care, but physical activity is the number one driver of public health.
Berry was chosen as the Hackathon venue because the Hackberry lab is an adequate space with plenty of resources for the event with many interested students.
Winners included junior creative tech major Graham Widmann and senior creative tech major, Jerome Payne.
Widmann’s idea to combat local inactivity was to make physical activity more fun, by combining video games and biking. He accomplished this by making any type of bike a video game controller. He hopes to expand on his innovative idea in the future.
Payne generated an idea for an app that would make car- sharing easier. His solution included matching people going the same direction. He believes his greatest challenge was coding the information in the 24 hours.
Hackberry Lab founder Zane Cochran pitches his idea for ride-sharing within the healthcare community.
Despite the difficulties, the students preserved and presented their solutions to a panel of local community members on Saturday. Cochran was impressed by with the results, and plans on creating more 24-hour Hackathons in the future.
“I was very impressed by how our students created meaningful and creative solutions to our local problems with a real impact,” Cochran said.
The winners of the Hackathon won cash prizes of $500 each and entrance to the state Hackathon later this year.
Senior Jerome Payne expands upon his idea to innovate ride-sharing by matching people that are traveling the same direction.
Jessie Goodson, Campus Carrier News Editor
Allie Pritchett, Viking Fusion Executive Director
UPDATED story April 30, 2018
On Sunday, the Berry College community mourned the loss of the fifth student death this academic year after senior Anna Trahan died from a cancerous tumor.
“Many of you have had Anna in your prayers as she battled this very aggressive cancer this semester,” Dean of Students Debbie Heida said Monday morning in an campus-wide email. “As a college community that loves deeply, our hearts are broken and we grieve with her mother, Tamara, and her sister, Sunny, who is also a Berry senior.”
Trahan, of Cartersville, learned of her cancerous tumor on Jan. 16 after experiencing increasing pain near her lower spine. Test results showed the 10-centimeter tumor was pushing against a nerve in the curve of her tailbone.
Funeral arrangements have not been made at this time, according to Heida.
Previous Story posted on February 8, 2018
Senior Anna Trahan, an animal science major and women and gender studies minor, has been involved with Campus Outreach at Berry and stayed busy with her major. Just before the start of her last semester of undergrad, Trahan got news of a tumor in her lower spine.
On Jan. 16, after further testing and scans, Trahan was informed that the tumor formed in the curve of her tailbone was cancerous. The tumor, about 10 centimeters in size, is pushing against a nerve, causing pain to Trahan and increasing the risks of treatment.
“I’ve had a lot of medical issues, so it’s not necessarily surprising to me,” Trahan said. “It’s just another thing that I have to overcome, and that’s fine with me.”
There aren’t many doctors specialized in tumors like this one, so the cost of treatments is high. Insurance doesn’t cover everything, which leaves the Trahan family to pay the rest of it. A GoFundMe me was created to help the family raise money for treatment. As of Feb. 7, according to the fundraising page, $2,325 has been raised out of the $15,000 goal by 51 people in 17 days.
Trahan is taking a leave of absence this semester, alongside her twin sister, Alexandra Trahan. Trahan and her sister have been attending Berry together for four years, both animal science majors and taking those classes together. Alexandra will be with her sister throughout treatment, and they both plan to return to Berry and complete their undergrad in the fall.
“We’re looking at this as sort of a blessing in disguise, because it’s been nonstop Berry since freshman year,” Anna Trahan said. “This gives us a chance to break.”
Trahan will undergo radiation treatment during her leave of absence, with the possibility of surgery. She said that she is mentally doing okay, and that this is just an obstacle to get over.
“I know I can overcome it and get through it,” Trahan said.
For anyone interested in donating to Trahan’s GoFundMe, the page can be found online at http://www.gofundme.com/rztvf9-cancerous-tumor.