Harrison Neville

Breath of Fresh Air during the Pandemic

Orr Park. Photo by Anna Grace Askelson. When I was thirteen, I went on a weeklong backpacking trip with my Boy Scout Troop to the Rocky Mountains. It was my very first backpacking trip, and I was one of the youngest people on the trip. I’d always loved being outside, but it was that trip which cemented my love of hiking.   Now, eight years later, I have hiked hundreds of miles, sometimes on long backpacking trips, and sometimes just on short day hikes.   It is my firm belief that my experiences hiking had a fundamental role in shaping me for...

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There’s Nothing More American than a Protest

The March on Washington, 1963. Photo from National Archives Catalog/Rowland Scherman. What does it mean to be a patriot? When Colin Kaepernick and other athletes chose to kneel during the national anthem, it attracted anger from many who called them unpatriotic and claimed they were disrespecting the flag.   The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines patriotism as “a love for or a devotion to one’s country.”   According to some, this means patriotism is dedication to the status quo. A commitment to preserve a past that they deem as worth saving.  I disagree.  I believe that a true patriot is someone who works...

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Board of Trustees Meeting Update

The April board of trustees meeting marked what was, according Chairman Todd Strange, the very first UM Board of Trustees meeting held remotely. The meeting covered a broad host of topics, but the main focus was on the future of the University in the fall.   Before they really dug down into business, UM President, Dr. John Stewart took a moment to acknowledge faculty senate president elect, Emily Gill, who would be taking over from the current president, Dr. Tiffany Wang.   For her part, Wang wrapped up her time representing the faculty senate by sharing a list of faculty priorities for the 2020-2021 year, and announcing that Dr. Raymond Ozley was the faculty service award winner for this year and would be honored at Founder’s Day.   The staff senate also gave a brief report with staff senate president Dawn Makofski stating to the board that the staff survey had been completed, and that the results would be compiled and passed on to the board of trustees.   Next up, the SGA reported to the board of trustees. Thomas Dillard, the current student trustee, was officially announced to the board as the next SGA president. Both Dillard and the current SGA president, Olivia Eldridge, expressed gratitude to the board for their work involving refunds, pass/fail option for grades and the student relief fund.   “On behalf of student, Olivia and I can both say we...

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SGA Recap April 15

This previous Wednesday, April 15, marked the last day that the SGA elected last spring would meet for the year.   Olivia Eldridge, SGA President, informed the senate that the process for students to receive their refunds for housing could be a slow one due to the University having to determine students’ eligibility to receive refunds on a case by case basis.   “It’s going to take some time before we see that money,” said Eldridge.   Eldridge also said that she would be speaking to the administration to determine how the refunds would work for students who have scholarships which lacked...

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First generation college student’s views on commencement

One of the greatest impacts that COVID-19 had on college students everywhere was the closing of universities. With the closing of their schools, college seniors across the country were left wondering what this would mean for their commencement.   Some universities, like UAB, responded to the situation by going online. Many others, including the University of Montevallo, chose to delay commencement. In the case of UM, commencement is currently scheduled for Aug. 7.  This change in plans is saddening for many seniors, but it hits many first-generation college students particularly hard.  “This is a major milestone; and not to be able to savor that moment would be extremely disappointing, I would imagine,” said Dr. Denise Myers, the director of the TRIO Student Support Services.   The sentiment expressed by Myers was shared by senior history major Thomas Reid. Though Reid agreed with UM’s decision to push back commencement, it didn’t stop him from feeling disappointed when he received the news.  “I had anticipated to graduate in May — party plans had been in the works, my parents and in-laws prepared to watch me cross the stage as one of the first people in the family to earn a bachelors,” said Reid. “I was dismayed, angry, even depressed when I received the email which pushed graduation back to August.”  Justin Williams, an accounting major and the senior class president, expressed a hope...

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