Alternative Spring Break 2013, Hofstra University

Some Hofstra University students decided to spend their spring break in Bayboro, North Carolina to help out out with a service project. This life changing experience, as cliché as it may sound, has been the high light of some students semester. From March 24 to 29, nearly 30 Hofstra students along with administrators Ashley Gray and Sara Hinkle, lived closely with each other. They made new friends and most of all, helped to change a small community and in the biggest way.

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Welcoming Non-European Pope

Published: 14 March 2013 By Claudia Balthazar

For the first time in 1,000 years, a non-European leader has been chosen to head the church. On Wednesday March 13, 2013, Cardinal from Argentina, Jorge Mario Bergoglio, emerged as the 266th pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church, the first time a South American broke the glass ceiling.

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Online Flirting: Is it Cheating?

 

By Claudia Balthazar

There’s a fine line between cheating and flirting. Boundaries between the two vary from couple to couple. There are always discussions about what’s considered cheating and what’s not. However, in today’s day and age, there’s one particular issue that falls in a gray area; online flirting.

Eighty-two percent of women believe online flirting is a form of cheating, according to the State of Dating Report, a study conducted by JDate and Christian Mingle; two online dating sites. Only 56 percent of men agreed it was considered cheating.

“It’s very hard to draw conclusions with regard to cheating,” Rachel Sussman, a New York-based marriage and family therapist and licensed clinical social worker said. “What is important to remember when looking at this stat [about women’s and men’s different definitions of cheating] is that the difference of opinion about this topic can create problems for relationships.”

Sussman partnered with JDate and Christian Mingle to analyze their findings. About 2,700 U.S. singles between the ages of 18 and 60 were surveyed.

One of the major reasons flirting could be considered cheating is many people believe it could lead to physical contact. Another finding the State of Dating study found was all women believed passionately kissing is considered unfaithful, compared to only 86 percent of men.

“Communication and talking it through before it becomes an issue is important to build trust and make sure both people in a relationship are on the same page,” Sussman said. Open communication is key for couples, she says, particularly on sensitive subjects like cheating. “When people start dating, there should be a talk regarding what the boundaries and lines are with cheating or similar topics. The more issues you can sort out early on, the less likely a problem will happen, particularly a relationship-ending issue.”

So the next time you’re confused about the difference between flirting and cheating, talk it over with your significant other, and they’ll let you know.

Published in Amour Creole Magazine, A magazine dedicated to French-speaking Caribbean readers living abroad, specifically Haitians.

http://amourcreole.com/online-flirting-is-it-cheating/?articl=article

 

Hofstra Hillel continues tradition of Birthright trip to Israel

By Claudia Balthazar
Staff Writer

Hofstra University students had the opportunity to go on a 10-day trip to Israel through the Taglit-Birthright Israel: Hillel Trip from 6 Jan. 2013 to 17 Jan. 2013.

“It was honestly one of the best experiences of my life,” said Lindsay Sher, sophomore at Hofstra who was one of the 21 Hofstra students who attended the trip in January — right around the time of the Israeli elections.

The Birthright Israel trip is offered through different organizations for students who apply to the program with the belief that it is their birth right, as a Jew, to visit Israel and learn about its history.

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Digital Trends Event Coverage: NYWICI Digital Trends Capital

By Claudia Balthazar
Last week, New York Women In Communications held their Digital Trends Capital event on February 19th as part of New York City’s first round of Social Media Week. During this event, panelists from all over the digital world expressed their ideas about the digital age and its impact on the Communications field.
Jennifer Preston, The New York Times journalist discussed her transition into the digital age. “It changed everything for me being that I was mainly in print.” This transition is what many reporters had to face when technology took over the world.
Through it all, this new transition has helped many people in the Communications field with the introduction to social media. “For everyone who is reinventing themselves, social media is wonderful,” Kendra Bracken-Ferguson, co-founder and partner of Digital Brand and Architects said. As Tammy Tibbets, founder and president of She’s the First puts it, “Media is the fuel to the engine of entrepreneurship.”
To many, social media makes the world a smaller place and allows people to develop things faster than ever before. “Through technology, you can create things quickly and at very little cost,” Amanda Hesser, co-founder of Food52 said, “Once I saw that, I never looked back.” And she spent eleven years at The New York Times. This shows how everyone could adapt to this digital age, and should.
The digital age will only progress. Keynote speaker, Rachel Haot, chief digital officer of the City of New York told to us about one of the city’s plans to incorporate coding into the high school education system.
Not everyone will be comfortable with social media at first, especially those who are transitioning into it. But there are programs like this that help people understand the importance of it and that show ways they can incorporate it into their everyday life.
“It’s nice to know that not everyone knows that much about social media and it’s okay to make mistakes as long as you keep going on,” said Ritza Yana, senior communications consultant for RYink. “And I think more and more people are willing to get involved,” added Deanna Utroske, content producer for Digital Book World.
Social Media Week will start back up again September from the 23rd to the 27th. For more information go to socialmediaweek.org

Published in the New York Women in Communications Inc. Student Blog, NYWICI Next

http://www.nywici.org/students/2013/2/27/digital-trends-event-coverage-nywici-digital-trends-capital

Alpha Kappa Psi Honors Women in Business

L to R, Yeni Castro, Ashley Kowal, Brian St. Hubert, Christina Whitehurst, Dr. Elizabeth Venuti Photo credit: Claudia Balthazar

L to R, Yeni Castro, Ashley Kowal, Brian St. Hubert, Christina Whitehurst, Dr. Elizabeth Venuti Photo credit: Claudia Balthazar

Women all over the world are breaking through various barriers to work in the corporate world of America. Alpha Kappa Psi, a professional business fraternity, held the panel “women in business”, on Feb. 6, 2013 at Hofstra University, to inform the audience about a woman’s experience in the corporate world of business. During the panel, women discussed how females could play positive roles in their positions.

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Getting Down to the Nitty-Gritty of PR

The Presenters: Jenelle Hamilton, Jonathon Woods, Cheryl Overton [Photo Credit: Gerald Peart]

The Presenters: Jenelle Hamilton, Jonathon Woods, Cheryl Overton [Photo Credit: Gerald Peart]

On Tuesday, January 29, 2013, individuals throughout New York City gathered for the Black Public Relations Society-New York (BPRSNY) PR Bootcamp “Getting Down with the Nitty-Gritty of PR”. Guest speakers included: Jonathon Woods, Senior Account Executive of Edelman; Cheryl Overton, Senior Communications Strategist of Cheryl Overton Communications; and Jenelle Hamilton, International PR Consultant.

They all spoke about different strategies and techniques to get ahead of the game in PR and what it really takes to master your craft.Cheryl outlined ten simple rules to “mastering public relations”. The communications firm owner advised audience members to “be a problem solver”, “always operate ethically”, and “draw inspiration from outside of the PR industry.”

Photo Credit: Gerald Peart

Photo Credit: Gerald Peart

 

Jonathon “got down to the nitty-gritty” of the fundamentals of crafting a strategic message, the perfect media campaign, and press release. He said that strategic messaging should be your foundation. PR practitioners can get so caught up in the ‘sexy’ headline that they forget the most important part – the mission. He stated, “organizations always have a central mission so you should always ladder up to their core mission; always ladder up to the client’s objective.”

Photo Credit: Darius Bradley

Photo Credit: Darius Bradley

Jonathan went on to describe the key components in developing a media campaign: develop objectives; identify key stakeholder targets; outline story angles and key messages; develop PR tactics; conduct outreach and launch the media campaign; follow-up; and of course evaluate the success of the campaign once its completed. He then dived into constructing the press release and he noted to keep it “simple and short”. People with lives won’t have the time to read six-page press releases filled with jargon – one page will do.

The last presenter of the evening was London native and International PR consultant, Jenelle Hamilton. Jenelle discussed becoming your own personal brand. She stressed that, “you have to find your niche, find what makes you different. You should want to be an individual and live outside of the box.” Jenelle closed the evening with the most important tip of all: be yourself, know who you are, and promote yourself as you would promote your clients.

Photo Credit: Keisha McCotry

Photo Credit: Keisha McCotry

If anyone came into the event confused on how to get ahead of the game, they definitely know now.

Published on the Black Pubic Relations Society – NY websitehttp://bprsny.wordpress.com/2013/02/06/getting-down-to-the-nitty-gritty-of-pr/

 

 

A Moment of Silence for the Sandy Hook Victims and Hope for Gun Control

Photo of Mayor of the Village of Hempstead taken by Elaine Rezende.

Photo of Mayor of the Village of Hempstead taken by Elaine Rezende.

The nation is weeping over the Sandy Hook massacre that left 20 children dead in Newtown Connecticut on Friday; a cry for more gun control.

“It’s important that we have gun control because anyone can buy a gun right now,” said Mayor of the Village of Hempstead, Wayne Hall Senior and a member of the Mayors Against Illegal Guns, at a candle light vigil held at Hofstra University on Dec. 17. 2012. “There’s only a certain amount of mayors and some of them don’t believe in gun control. We need the voters to stand up and say enough is enough.”

The Xi Psi chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. along with Hofstra’s Black Student Union and the Nu Tau chapter of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority Inc. brought the Hofstra community together for a moment of silence, a prayer and an exchange of thoughts for the people who lost their lives at Sandy Hook.

“This was something that struck us as very important to speak up about,” said Amanda Medina, Vice President of the Nu Tau chapter of Sigma Gamma Rho.

Jessica Downing-Brown, President of the Sorority exclaimed, “This is not enough. We should step up more.”

After the vigil was over, Vice President of the Xi Psi chapter of Alpha phi Alpha, Deion Toppin said, “It upsets me when it takes something like this to bring people together. Gun violence has always been a problem.”

Mayor Wayne Hall Senior said, “We’ve seen our share of gun violence in Hempstead. In all the minority communities we have gun violence.” He added, “It can happen anywhere as you can see on Friday.

After the vigil, the division of student affairs at Hofstra University also held a prayer and an additional vigil for the Hofstra student body.

The gunman, 20-year-old Adam Lanza, was said to have a history of mental health illnesses. On Friday, he killed his mother, children and adults, and then committed suicide.

On Sunday evening, President Obama spoke at the Sandy Hook vigil,  “calling for an end to the epidemic of gun violence in America,” according to an article in the Huffington Post.

The nation is stricken by this tragedy.

-Claudia Balthazar

Published in Black Ink, the official newsletter for the Hofstra Association of Black Journalists.

http://habjblackink.com/2012/12/17/a-moment-of-silence-for-the-sandy-hook-victims-and-hope-for-gun-control/

Political Figures and Experts Discuss Poverty in America at Brookings

The New Year is right around the corner, and while most people are probably worrying about their New Year’s Resolutions, there are still concerns about the fiscal cliff.

Depending on the President’s and Congress’ decision, America’s economy may have to face reduced spending for safety net programs and tax increases on higher income families to address the nation’s deficit. On Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2012, the Center on Children and Families at Brookings and Spotlight on Poverty and Opportunity, held an event at the Brookings Institution in Washington D.C. to discuss what’s in store for the next four years.

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