Quidditch Takes Flight

 

               While Lindenwood focuses on its transition to NCAA, another sport is taking off across the country. Quidditch, the mythical sport played in the Harry Potter series, has become a popular pastime among college students, involving intramurals, club teams, colligate leagues, and even an international world cup.

                Quidditch has rapidly expanded since 2005. The Quidditch World Cup was established in 2007, where the first intercollegiate match was played between Middlebury, the home of college Quidditch, and Vassar College. Over the weekend of November 12, 2011, more than 2,000 athletes on 98 teams from five countries competed in the fifth annual International Quidditch Association World Cup.

                This level of competition is not for the faint of heart. Over the course of the tournament, sixteen players were taken to the hospital with injuries ranging from concussions to broken bones. Despite losing its captain in the semifinals due to a head injury, Middlebury won its fifth consecutive World Cup title over Florida Quidditch in a close match that was ultimately determined by the capture of the Snitch.

                In 2011,Lindenwood joined a growing group of schools with unofficial leagues. Played as a fall intramural, Quidditch developed into a competition with growing interest. Brynn Sebring, captain and coach of The Masters of Death, led her team to victory in the program’s inaugural year. When asked how she fell in love with the game, Sebring responded, “I’m a huge fan of the books, who isn’t? However, I first learned about Muggle Quidditch when my high school formed a team.”

                Enthusiasm translated into victory for The Masters of Death, a team that flew on golf clubs (except the Seeker, Trent Farmer, who rode a Swiffer) due to the lightweight quality. These substitute brooms would not be allowed in IQA regulation play, however. As Sebring says, “Lindenwood used IQA rules to the best of their ability. There are some pretty insane rules about broom length and exact dimensions of the pitch that were unrealistic to enforce with the game being so new at Lindenwood.”

                In IQA regulated play, referees and Snitches (an unaffiliated individual dressed in yellow who’s capture ends the game) attend workshops and training sessions to develop their skills. Who were the Snitches used at Lindenwood? “No one is going to be surprised when I say I think they were Work and Learn students,” says Sebring.

                This type of play will change at Lindenwood in the future, as steps are taken to develop a serious team with chances of competing at the World Cup. The current in-house tournament system could be used to further this goal. While most colleges have a single, traveling team, others such as Middlebury compete among their own schools to ensure that the team with the best chance of success competes in intercollegiate matches.

                Sophomore Kaity McAllister says, “I think it would be awesome to see a tournament, because then more people would have a chance to play and get involved.” Luckily for McAllister, she will be around to experience the future of Quidditch at Lindenwood.

                Senior David Whitley says, “If I wasn’t graduating this year, Quidditch is something I’d like to try. It’s a great idea. Its too bad it didn’t take off sooner.”

                Whatever the future of the sport on a national level, it seems that Muggle Quidditch has found a home on Lindenwood’s campus and in the hearts of enthusiastic students.

Lindenwood Course Requirements

Students planning to register for Spring courses in November must be aware of prerequisites and course requirements before making appointments with advisors.

The purpose of prerequisites and degree requirements is to insure that the Lindenwood graduate is a well-rounded, educated citizen. This is achieved through admission standards, placement tests, course prerequisites, and the Writing Proficiency Assessment.

As all current student are aware, admission to Lindenwood is granted based upon past academic performance. This is determined through review of high school transcripts, ACT scores, and the admission interview. This is intended to determine if a student has a basic level of achieved knowledge and logical reasoning before beginning college-level courses.

Additionally, placement tests are important. Students who did not complete the Math Placement assessment upon arrival at Lindenwood must do so before enrolling in any math course above Intermediate Algebra (MTH 10000). Due to the progressive nature of mathematics courses, it is crucial that students have prior knowledge when entering a course. Without that foundation, the success of the student would be limited.

In lieu of taking the placement test, students may enroll in Intermediate Algebra as a refresher course before continuing to higher courses.

For some students, placement tests would be ideal in other disiplines as well. One student, Abby Edele, says,

“I wish there was a way to test out of the composition classes. I completed higher levels of English in high school, yet I am still forced to sit through two semesters of these classes. Also, I am unable to take higher level classes until I complete ENG17000, which makes scheduling my courses difficult.”

As noted within the Course Catalog and outlined on each Bingo sheet, each degree at Lindenwood is achieved through a series of classes, beginning with introductory courses and culminating in upper-level, specialized courses.

Courses labeled 10000-19999 are described in the Course Catalog as, “Introductory courses open to all students without prerequisites”, while those labeled 20000-29999 are, “Specialized courses normally open to all students”. Courses exceeding a 30000 level often require prerequisites.

Students must be aware of the prerequisites for courses. If a student manages to avoid any lower level degree-specific courses, he may find himself unable to complete all of the upper level requirements in time for graduation. This is not the ideal situation.

While most prerequisites are designated as necessary prior to the start of a course, there are some instances in which the courses may be taken simultaneously. This decision may fall to the professor, and is not a route that a student should count on.

In addition to prerequisite courses, business students may find themselves unable to register for advanced courses if they have not completed the Writing Proficiency Assessment. This measure is an effort by the School of Business to ensure its students complete the assessment and meet a basic communication standard.  

While this may seem unfair to business students, they may rest assured that all students must complete the assessment prior to graduation. This is a part of Lindenwood’s guarantee that its graduates are able to succeed at written communication in the professional world.

Any student who is unsure if he has met all course requirements may locate more information through the Course Catalog or degree-specific Bingo sheets. Individual questions should be directed to that student’s advisor.

Career Center Helps Students

Seniors concerned with graduation and entering the job market have a valuable ally in Dana Wherli, Director of Career Development. From her office in the back of the Spellman Center, Wherli counsels students in developing effective resumes and cover letters.

“Preparing for Success”, her presentation, provides valuable insight into what employers search for in candidates applications. Cover letters and resumes are important to the hiring process, though students often do not realize the image that each projects.

Cover letters, Wherli advises, should be well-written and engaging. The document is an employer’s first writing sample from applicants, and it is important to send the correct message. This can be achieved in a few ways.

First, it is important to write individual letters. Mass producing may sound like a smart idea, but ultimately comes off as impersonal, and may leave out key targets for each job.

Targeting is also important. Employers post job requirements, and it is wise for candidates to explain why they meet each.

Focusing on the company is also vital. Excessive use of self-directed words suggests that the prospective hire is really interested in himself, and any job will be sufficient. This focus on the company can also be demonstrated in the simple detail of hand-signing each letter.

While cover letters are important, Wherli advises that resumes are the true key to obtaining an interview, and ultimately a job. It is a valuable personal marketing tool. When designing and choosing a resume style it is important to remember that each resume gets an average initial look of only 30-40 seconds. This time can be the deciding factor of whether or not an applicant will be interviewed.

The types of resumes, chronological, functional, and combination, each have strengths and weaknesses. Lindenwood graduates will often find that the combination method is most effective. This style focuses equally on education and employment experience as well as personal skills.

Currently there are several resume workshops in planning stages as well as a large career event in February. The Career Center is an important place for seniors to utilize in the coming months.

For assistance writing or revising resumes, contact Wherli or Brandi Goforth in the Career Center at CareerDevelopment@lindenwood.edu.

The Career Center: A Valuable Student Resource

Each semester, the Career Center assists students writing resumes, searching for employment opportunities, and finding the dream job. One of the greatest challenges to new grads is the inability to develop a resume and interview well. Rest assured, Goforth and her team are able to help.
Students often expect immediate success in the job market. Unfortunately, this is an unlikely occurrence. It is wise for new graduates to look for entry-level positions, and even then, expect more than a few rejections. Sound advice, however easier said than done.

The two types of interviews, informational and employment, are each crucial to the job search process. It is in students’ best interests to utilize both when meeting new contacts. The informational interview is intended to provide insight to a profession from a respected employer. It is not meant to secure employment or even a second interview. Students must learn about real-world applications for degrees before they are able to put them into practice.

Employment interviews are meant to secure a job. The most important thing to remember in this instance is preparation. Research the company and be sure to ask questions. It is crucial in the current market to show interest in a potential employer as a company, rather than just another job listing.
Students also face challenges when writing resumes, the product of classes where each professor wants something different. Luckily for Lindenwood seniors, Goforth’s office is here to help. There are several events in the works, including a resume evaluation and career fair which will give students a chance to better understand what is expected from them post-graduation.

For more information follow CareerCenter_LU on Twitter, or stop by the Career Center.

Future Media Talent Wants to Help Children

Brian Webb is nothing if not dedicated. Despite his overwhelming college schedule he was still able to find time to settle in for a quick chat with an eager reporter.

The third of four children, and the only boy, he is unphased by the chaos that surrounds reporting and the media. In fact, it is this very profession that he wishes to enter after completing his degree at Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Missouri.

Born in Indianappolis, Indiana, Brian moved to the other side of the Mississippi and an infant and has remained in the St. Charles area since. It was there that he graduated from Saint Dominic High School and will soon add a Mass Communications degree in the fall of 2012.

After completing Lindenwood, Brian hopes to persue employment with an organization such as ESPN, though, he claims he will be happy with a radio job as well. Either job would allow him to travel outside of the United States, which has been one of his life-long dreams.

It is his dream to be successful with work as well as family. After settling into a comfortable, stable job, he hopes to find a good woman to marry and eventually have children.

This love of family carries over into his aspirations for financial success. Eventually, Brian hopes to obtain enough money to present St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital with a sizable donation. This kind of charitable goal is uncommon among college students.

Truely a gentleman of character, it is with great hope that the people of St. Charles watch Brian Webb, as he sets out to make the world a better place.

Basic Reporters

Basic reporters are the unsung heros of the media industry.

Often focus is given to prominent news anchors such as Anderson Cooper and Katie Couric. While important figures and essential to the distribution of information, anchors and those who recieve camera time are not usually the reporters working in the field daily to uncover and understand stories.

Reporters are required to work in all conditions, from local charities to war zones. They travel for large portions of the year, depending on their assignments, and leave their families and friends behind.

Those who are not well known, such as local reporters, earn little pay and recognition for the ammount of work that they contribute. This type of position pays off at the end of the day in the form of a byline in written reporting.

Reporters working in television may not receive any sort of acknowledgement for their work depending on the news format favored by the producers of a specific channel.

In order to succeede as a reporter, it is important to understand the value of hard work and perseverance. While one lead may not pan out, there are always options to pursue for those willing to put forth the effort.

Reporters must be able to calmly and professionally approach subjects with an unbiased view, regardless of their personal opinions. At the same time, however, they must be able to ask the tough questions that may put a subject on the spot.

 Reporters must be able to communicate effectively in both written and oral forms to deliver the news of the day.

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