LSSC students and advisors distribute $570K for student activities

On March 14, a select group of advisors and student leaders at Lake-Sumter State College gathered to decide how $569,262 would be divvied up.

LSSC Theatre Arts Society gets ready for "Godspell"

In April Lake-Sumter State College students will get their first chance to see Godspell, the LSSC Theatre Arts Society’s latest production.

Angler Staff attends the Annual NYC College Journalism Conference

Recently the Angler Staff was in New York for the annual College journalism conference.

Recycling allows students to help environment and move up in SGA

Blue bins with pyramid-shaped tops can be found all over Lake-Sumter State College’s Leesburg campus, encouraging students to recycle their empty soda cans and bottles.

Building hope bridges

A candid interview with LSSC President Dr. Charles Mojock

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Tax Day Deadline Approaches

By:Jesus Hernandez, Media Editor 

Photo courtesy of Internal Revenue Service 

April 15 is the much dreaded Tax Day and as Benjamin Franklin once said "In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes." It is the Internal Revenue Service's official filing deadline for 2014. Franklin's quote still holds true today in fact according to the Journal of the American Medial Association deaths from traffic accidents rise 6% on Tax Day. After the deadline unpaid taxes are penalized unless one files for an extension prior to the deadline. For additional information visit

Helpful Tips for Students

By: Breanna Griffin
Photo By:Jesus Hernandez, Media Editor 

Before signing up for classes, students can browse through the college handbook, which lists every class available. Classes are under each major, they may be required for, along with credits and information about that major. Students can go ahead and sign up for classes according to their major but it is always advised to stop by advising and speak with an advisor on campus about mandatory classes and the exact route that is best for that particular student. Depending on if or where the student may be transferring in the future, they could be authorized to take particular classes to meet the university’s requirements. Another way to browse classes are through the express registration on the college website. This feature can be located under “Class Schedule” from the homepage. This is where the student can look for classes under any subject or even instructor. Once the student enters in either a subject or instructor to browse, they will see various classes open that meet the requirements entered. This will display available classes including their times, credits, and costs.

The next most important thing a student needs to decide, after picking the right courses, is deciding on the right professor. Having the right professor is critical for the student’s success in the class. How can students know a professor is going to be right for them ? There is a website that helps students with this struggle called The website has every college campus and many of the professors from those colleges featured on the site with previous students’ feedback. Many students do actually use this site and comment their constructive criticism of the course with the particular professor. Carolyn Sherry, a college student, says, “I always look at the site before I sign up for a class so I try to comment on my professors when they are great or if maybe they aren't that great so others can be aware. When I add a comment on a professor that I wasn't a big fan of I always make sure I add every particular reason that professor was tough for me because others may not have a problem with everything you personally do so it's good to say exactly what bugs you about them so others can analyze the professor fairly.” This is very helpful because after reading the comments the student can decide for themselves if this is the right professor for them or not. If a student struggles with lots of research papers or extremely strict grading methodology and they see a professor they were thinking about taking is known for these things, the student will be prepared or has the opportunity to switch the class for a more suitable professor. “I have went on the site to look up professors before, after signing up for a class and have seen some not so good comments about them which are basically things like grading too strictly, not communicating well, or work having nothing to do with the course and changed instructors but I have never seen anything out of line”, Sherry says. College is suppose to be most beneficial to the student so having the right professors can help make that student successful. College websites are the best place to get any information about important dates, events, and campus opportunities. The Lake Sumter State College website has their calendar of important dates posted right on their homepage. Some important dates that are posted include the dates classes end, final exams begin and end, term ends, and grades available. This is where you would find deadlines for signing up for classes, submitting financial aid applications, and payments. There is also, on the homepage, a column for news including information on events and organizations. Your college’s website is there to help students and contains a plethora of information They are also updated frequently so the information is always valid for the students’ convenience.

Most colleges have on campus part time and full time job opportunities. Students must meet all requirements, which could include a degree. Some positions include director admissions, computer technician, and learning center tutors. There are also work study positions available to offer jobs to students who need to earn funds to help pay for their educational expenses. To provide a work experience which will enhance the student’s educational and/or occupational goals, and provides additional services which would otherwise not exist for LSSC and for participating public or private non-profit organizations . As well as on campus work-study, there are Federal Work Study Community Service Learning opportunities for students. The student can do work that benefits the community and residents. Hiring events are held on campus for students currently seeking employment in the Health, Education, Public and Human Services fields. Some tips to prepare for the event include creating a professional resume that emphasizes your skills and practice good interviewing skills because the event is part of the interview, make a good impression.

College students usually try to find cheap entertainment. It is a good idea for students to keep their student card on them at all times because many places offer a student discount. “College students get discounts on movie tickets, bus tickets, and various stores offer a percentage off at each purchase. A lot of students get their books online rather than the bookstore because they're cheaper and I usually use Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) and they have an "Amazon Student" account you can sign up for to get discounts”, says college student, Eduardo Bracero. Along with discounts there are a lot of others way students can find cheap entertainment, even on campus. The Theatre Arts Society at the college usually puts on different plays throughout the semesters, right now at Lake Sumter State College there is a play going on April 5th, 6th, 10th, 11th, 12th, and 13th called “God Spell”. There are also baseball and softball games students can attend, which are free for LSSC students. The next baseball and softball games are both held on April 5th at 1:00pm. Students can also get involved in on campus clubs such as FCA, College Democrats, Brain Bowl, S.A.F.I.R.E, and Theatre Arts Society. Many students ask about working out in their college’s health center so they do not have to add a gym membership, of approximately $50 a month, to their expenses. Students do not really think about cheap entertainment as being an easy thing to find but it really is. There are free museums that students could go to, parks, libraries, bike riding, nature walks, free local live music events, art galleries, community festivals and events, free campgrounds, taking pets to the dog park,volunteering opportunities, and even getting a couple friends together for a board game or puzzle. Especially when you are with a group of friends, anything can be enjoyable when you need to get away from all the stress for a while.

Even though stress is inevitable for college students stress reducers like help choosing classes, professors, finding important deadlines, discovering on campus employment opportunities, and knowing the cheap entertainment nearby can help students so they can focus on what really matters to succeed. College campuses are there for the students’ benefit so I highly recommend when walking down the hallways of campus, looking around at the billboard posts and flyers containing information on all sorts of information for students to keep updated. The greatest way for students to be aware of these simple but important top five tips is to encourage your fellow students to check them out.

Monday, April 14, 2014

LSSC offers many scholarships as tuition rises

By: Clayton Chak, Leesburg Campus
Photo courtesy of everystockphoto

With the prices of college tuition, it may be difficult for students to afford the rising prices of tuition each year to attend community, state or university colleges. At Lake-Sumter State College, the cost of tuition depends on factors such as whether or not the student is a Florida resident, the student is pursuing a Certificate and Associate (AA, AS and AAS) degree program, or if the student is earning a Baccalaureate (BAS) degree.

Tuition for any of the degree programs can be expensive, but there is a variety of ways to earn money on campus through scholarships, Financial Aid and on-campus clubs who award its members by participating in group events. The first step to applying for free money should be to find the Financial Aid office, located in the Student Services building at the Leesburg campus. The advisors in the office will help direct new and current students on how to apply for financial aid through the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), a government assisted financial aid program distributing money to students based on the information provided on their tax returns. 

If the student is a dependent, they will have the option to file under the tax return of whomever he or she is dependent upon. Another way to earn money is by submitting an application to the LSSC Foundation. The foundation spends year after year reaching out to local businesses and foundation members for donations towards student scholarships, which can only be awarded to LSSC students. Roseanne Brandeburg, Executive Director of the Foundation, is one of the foundations members who collects money which helps many students pay for tuition and books. According to Brandeburg, the LSSC Foundation raised $261,380 for student scholarships in 2013, and has currently opened the application process for the month of March 2014. 

The foundation offers applications three times throughout the year for students to get scholarships. If students enjoy participating in extra-curricular activities, several clubs on campus offer scholarships to those who participate avidly in the organized events. Other groups that may provide scholarship money are Brain Bowl, College Diplomats, Odyssey, Student Government Association, among other groups.

Godspell skillfully brings song, dance and a message to the stage

Story by: Katie McKay, Staff Writer
Photos by: Katie McKay

Godspell actors sing and dance during the curtain call, also considered to be the resurrection of Jesus.
Not far into Godspell, Chris Stephens walks to the front of the stage wearing smart-looking glasses, a dress shirt and slacks. He’s playing the part of Jesus. With a flick of his wrist the glasses skitter across the ground. He tears off his shirt to reveal a Superman symbol, and snatches off the slacks to show bright red pants with rainbow suspenders, thus setting the stage for an over-the-top, 70’s retelling of the gospel of Matthew.

Written in 1971 by John-Michael Tebelak, this play was designed to tell the gospel in what was then the modern day, and to recount it with joy. It has been performed both on and off Broadway and around the world, and was made into a movie in 1973. Since it deals with the story of Christ, it is a fitting play for the Easter season and is loved by church groups especially.

Lake-Sumter State College’s Theatre Arts Society decided to put their own spin on the show after seeing how cost-effective the set was, despite having to pay royalties. It is also a favorite of director Gary Rogers, who performed in the play at the beginning of his career. They couldn’t have planned it for a better time, with Easter only a little over a week away.

The actors really came into their own with the Godspell music. Ethan Earls had the first solo as John the Baptist, and carried the rolling melody of Prepare Ye the Way of the Lord with aplomb even as he walked down the auditorium steps. Stephens had solos throughout the show that allowed him to show off his enchanting tenor voice, called surprisingly good by some of the LSSC students who had seen the show. Haley Murk presented another notable solo, performing Turn Back, O Man with rich tone and style. Monica Lamud, Murk, and Stephens also made for a close-knit trio in By My Side. Lamud gave the song a personal, intimate feel, and drew the audience in closer because of it.

Chris Stephens plays the part of Jesus in the crucifixion scene.
Jackie Spradley opened up dramatically on stage with a spunky, free style of acting, and she paired well with Jacob Kerner in the parable of the rich man and Lazarus. Kerner inserted timely comedy throughout the play, such as when he shouted, “I’m coming, Elizabeth!” while feigning death. Jakob Preston excelled in all areas and even pulled off some gymnastics at the curtain call. Playing the part of Jeffery, Michael Griswold starred in the catchy song We Beseech Thee while sporting a Mario-esque look with a red had and drawn-on mustache. Sarah Gray filled multiple roles by choreographing the show as well as skillfully singing and dancing in it as the character Joanne.

Performing beside the actors for the entire show was the ensemble, which consisted of a piano, drum set, and an electric, acoustic and bass guitar all conducted by David DeHoog. They accompanied the play perfectly and added a special element to it with their talent. DeHoog even had a solo in the play, singing duet at times with Gray. The talent for the ensemble was gathered from varying places. The electric guitar player David Rowe, for instance, learned to play from YouTube videos, and actually wrote his own solos for the performance.

The play as a whole was carried out in a reverent way. While they actors did lend their enthusiasm and dramatic touch to the gospel, the Biblical message was never taken lightly or derided. “I believe [Godspell] was written with respect for the material it was based upon. And each time I have performed in it or have seen it presented, I believe that same respect is evident in the staging and acting as well,” Rogers notes in the program. At the performance he said, “I haven’t heard any complaints.”

Sarah Gray and ensemble director David DeHoog perform On the Willows together.
While lack of respect wasn’t a problem, some LSSC students commented that the play was a little too religious for them. Donald Henderson, who came to support the theatre group, said, “It’s more about the acting. I’m not so keen on the Godspell part of it,” indicating the broad connections between the performance and scripture. Jesus’ lines, for instance, are almost verbatim from the Bible, and the same is true for other characters at various points in the play. Another student shared Henderson’s view in passing during the intermission, saying that he liked the singing and dancing, but not so much the rest of it.

Stephens had no such problem while playing Jesus. He was approached after the show by audience members who had noticed his tattoos of an Ichthus and the star of David and wondered if they were temporarily applied for the show. He assured everyone that they were real and said, “I love Jesus in real life, so it works out for the show.”

Jakob Preston added, “I thoroughly enjoyed every single message that was in this play.” He said the best possible outcome would be for members of the audience to walk away with something good from Godspell. Haley Murk explained that while she isn’t a religious person and originally had reserves about the theme, she soon enjoyed her part in the production, saying, “I can rock out to this; this is cool.”

Michael Griswold enthusiastically leads the cast in We Beseech Thee.
The audience was mostly comprised of older Lake county citizens looking for a good show. Joan Wright heard about the play through the Orlando Sentinel and came with her husband to buy tickets before the theater doors even opened. “I knew it was very popular,” she said. “I want to see their rendition of it.” She already knew what Godspell was about, and was able to give a brief summary of the plot. Several others heard about it through word of mouth and came with friends.

Noticeably lacking in the crowd were LSSC students, save for a few who came for extra credit. Director Rogers acknowledged that it is difficult for students to attend during normal play hours. Several matinee times were offered, but the majority of the audience was still made up of outside community members and parents.

Overall, Godspell was an uplifting experience that packed a powerful message. Both actors and audience alike were happy to share their favorite bits. Several patrons noted that they loved the personality of the characters, and how they were all individuals. Henderson cited the sheep and goats scene as the best, and others commented on the show’s fun atmosphere.

Chris Stephens sings Save the People while showing off his ironically appropriate tattoo of the star of David. 
Of the cast, several pointed to dancing as a favorite aspect of Godspell. Spradley said it “was definitely a fun element to the show.” Singing, dancing and acting all at the same time, she says, was “tiring but fun.” Stephens agreed that it was a challenge. His favorite part of the play: “All the people I get to work with.” Others mentioned bonding and extra credit as their motivation.

Various audience members – some of whom had just visited LSSC campus for the first time – affirmed that they would be back for future productions. This, if nothing else, can be counted as a mark of success for LSSC’s Theatre Arts Society. Godspell has left a lasting impression, and it’s a good one.

Friday, April 11, 2014

LSSC holds beach themed BBQ

By: Kevin Trinidad
Photos By: Kevin Trinidad

Hunter Blaise and Jessica Lord enjoying the sand.
Having been in the talks since last year, the joint venture between the Diplomats and Student Government Association was erected on Apr. 10 from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. on the Sails Pavilion ground at South Lake. The Beach BBQ looked like a success since its conception, and based on today’s observations, the assumption could not have been more accurate.

Being that March is Kite Month, the SGA were aware and a newsletter was sent to LSSC students advising them to “Watch out for our upcoming kite event!” Ultimately the kite event was incorporated into the Beach BBQ, and it was as suiting as the sun that shown down, making it feel like real beach weather.

Rebecca Nour and Brandon flying kites.
Student, Jessica Lord, was right in the center of the pavilion when the event started. Fresh out of Chemistry II class, Lord was happy to get some free time, “It’s nice to be able to come out here and sit down to relax, and the pork sundae tastes really good too.” The beach atmosphere did not escape Lord, “It was well done, there is sand and water to play with, and if everyone were in their bathing suits it would really look like a beach.”

With a Southern twist on the classic ice-cream sundae, the ones at the Beach BBQ consisted of a clear cup filled with: pulled pork, baked beans, mashed potatoes, BBQ sauce, and a tiny tomato. If it weren’t for the distinct size variations and inconsistent texture from what is usually put on a sundae, the Pork Sundae’s would have easily been perceived as ice-cream. The BBQ sauce was reminiscent of chocolate syrup, as was the tiny tomato to a cherry. Also for consumption was a bake sale, in which the proceeds benefited the Students Helping Students Scholarship.

Students expressing their creativity and creating sand art.
One of the first songs the DJ played was “Happy” by Pharrell Williams, and it was symbolic of the way everyone was feeling.

Students were also able to take pictures with a surfboard backdrop and a floor covering that gives the illusion of sand; hula-hoop as much as much as one can desire; fill fish-shaped key chains and pirate bottles with sand of various colors, creating what is known as sand art. A mountain bike was auctioned off to a lucky winner.

Timothy Lord, student and winner of the bike, helped set up the Beach BBQ and was satisfied with the outcome, “It’s barely 12:30 and there are about 50 people here right now.” Lord mentioned the benefits that come from the social aspects of events like this, “People can get to know one another here. I met Charles Gregory (fellow Diplomat) and Carmen at an LSSC event, and not only are we good friends, but Carmen informed me about SGA and I attend now.”

Returning student, Joanne Millendez, graduated from Valencia Community College, and is back to Lake Sumter to further her education in nursing. Millendez recalls what her first impression on Lake-Sumter was, “It has really grown a lot. I initially did not want to come here after I graduated from East Ridge High School in 09’, but now it seems and looks like a real college.”

Heather Luis hula-hooping.


Comic by: Katie McKay

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Are Armed Students better than Addressing Mental Health? The Angler fishes Deep for Real Answers

By: Mark Valentino, Features Writer
Photos By: Mark Valentino

With all the politics centered around guns and the possibility of concealed firearms on campus becoming a serious consideration, the idea is currently being debated in the state legislature, it seems that the law would allow students who are former or current military or law enforcement would be allowed to carry concealed weapons on campus,with proper training and approval by the administration. While the politicians debate the merits of the gun debate, the student body has many varied opinions of whether or not guns should be allowed on campus.

" Its a question of liberty, If you 
want to carry it is your choice."
said Lauren Hawkins
Students are starkly divided on this debate where normal friends or loved ones vary drastically in their opinions. " I think that everyone should be allowed to carry a gun; it is their second amendment right, not just military or the police." Lauren Hawkins remarked while snacking on a snow-cone.

While quite a few students have feelings along the same lines, some think that more guns on campus is not the best way to go. " I don't think that its a good idea, I mean with Ft. Hood happening again by a service member, I mean how can we distinguish who should carry and who should not. While most students are in favor of the proposed law, an overwhelming majority of the students interviewed would concede that a mental health screening should be included in the purchase of a firearm.

While most students support the legislation ,a large majority of staff and the administration are mostly opposed to the it.
Matt Guy feels very strongly on the issue,
" A gun is a tool, just like any tool it can
used for good or bad"
"I think if you are current Law enforcement, then you understand the consequences of what carrying a firearm could encompass so as long as they are wearing their badge I don’t see anything wrong with them carrying, the military aspect, that I don't know about. I mean look what happened at Ft. Hood, twice". Explained the security staff, " We have excellent communication with the students, and staff that are here on campus."

"I think that the security guards should be armed on the campus, I don't know how I feel about the military aspect explained one student who asked to remain anonymous. "I think that the security guards are already here and their job is to protect and monitor the campus. I think that it would be a good idea to arm them on campus not the students, We do not need vigilantes." he went on to explain.

With feelings running so high, and opinions so strong, this bill has generated a new spark to ignite the gun debate on school campuses across the state. Some of the concerns that students have include the fact that less than a week ago there was another mass shooting at Ft. Hood in Texas. That attack was the direct result of a mentally unstable soldier killing other service men over an argument. One of the people killed was a native to Mullberry Florida and was an active duty soldier. The shooter purchased the firearm legally at the same store that another soldier bought a firearm and ammunition and proceeded to go on a shooting rampage less than five years ago. When someone who is mentally unstable has access to a firearm it normally ends in tragedy.

"I don't think guns belong on campus" explained one professor who asked to remain anonymous.

With all the major implications and the effects that this bill could have on our campus and state, it is certain there will be many more heated debates state wide before this conversation is finished. If you the reader want to know exactly what is in the bill go to and look for the bills 753, and bill 968.

Lake county residents have a few more days to attend the fair

Story by: Katie McKay, Staff Writer
Photos by: Katie McKay

The fair sprawls out across the Lake County Fairgrounds for just a few more days.

Saturday the 12th will mark the end of the Lake County fair this year. For one more weekend, residents can enjoy wild rides, Midway games, 4-H competitions, and all varieties of food at the intersection of county road 44 and county road 452. The gates open at 5 p.m. Thursday and Friday and 1 p.m. Saturday, and close every day at 10 p.m. Admission is $7 for adults, $3 for children ages 6-11, and free for kids five and under.

The fair has offered various specials throughout their ten-day run, including two-for-one deals, dollar days, and armbands that allow participants to ride unlimited rides. April 10 is armband night. These can be purchased at numerous places, including Walgreens, for $18 and allow fairgoers to skip the hassle of buying ride tickets, which can add up to great amounts. The next deal day is the last. On the 12th, seniors get $2 off at the gate and armbands can be purchased for $20.

Armbands purchased before the fair can save patrons money on rides like the swing tower.

Each day also features free stage shows, like the Neon Truckers this Thursday and Friday and the talent show on Saturday. There are numerous daily attractions like the One Man Band, Ultimate Air dogs, Our Rural Heritage, a fire fighter show and a traveling robot named Oscar that roams the grounds.

Throughout the fair, 4-H participants have been showing their pigs, cows, goats, rabbits and poultry while other have been competing in areas such as horticulture, baking, photography, pageantry and hay bale decorating. Fair patrons can wander through and admire the entries to these contests.

The Lake County Fair now averages 80,000 visitors per year, but it started as a small event in 1921 called the Florida Sportsmen’s Exposition. On their website, the fair’s manager Happy Norris says, “Still today it is the responsibility of the County Fair to promote agriculture, educate and entertain its patrons.”

Lake-Sumter State College student Erin McKay enjoys a bungee-jumping attraction at the fair.

Present-day entertainment involves a lot more than it did in 1921. Attractions now include a haunted house, endless games from North American Midway, a kiddy roller coaster, a swing tower, and all manner of gut-wrenching, sling-you-through-the-air rides. Food vendors are set up on each corner selling everything from spaghetti to fried pickles and all that falls in between.

The Lake County Fair is just one of 51 that occur in Florida. Five of them were actually taking place this week in various locations, including the Suwannee County Fair and the Hernando County Fair. For those who want to mark their calendars for next year, the Lake County Fair always runs for ten days beginning on the first Thursday in April.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Academic Decathlon starts Next Week on the Leesburg Campus

By: Mark Valentino, Features Writer
Photo by: Jesus Hernandez, Media Editor

The SGA will be hosting an Academic Decathlon starting on Monday April 7. The Fun begins on Monday with Trivia Game day; where teams will be asked a series of 10 questions in three rounds of questions that would test each teams general knowledge and trivia skills, While there, students can observe the teams competing and snow-cones will be available free of charge.

On Tuesday will be Theater Day; where teams will have to act out a skit from three plays that are spontaneously given to each team. They will be judged on many different aspects of each performance. Scenes will be selected from both plays and movies. Also refreshments that consist of soda and popcorn will be available for students to partake in. On Wednesday the teams will compete in Race Day. There are three races; The Wheelbarrow Race, A Track Race,a Kayak race.

Finally on Thursday will be the Celebration bash where there will be a catered lunch by Sonny's BBQ. There will be fun and refreshments as well and also the announcement of the winning team.

"With Finals two weeks away and students starting to feel the grind I think this is the last week to enjoy some free time and have some fun here at school. Explained Joe Hamby one of the main organizers of the event, "I just want everyone to come out and have fun, Relax and enjoy the events before we all have to study for the finals"

Any students who are interested in checking out what the Decathlon is all about should stop by the Quad starting at 10:30 a.m. on Monday, the first event starts at 11:00 a.m. There are still a few spots for students who want to sign up. Sign up sheet is in the Student Center on the Leesburg Campus.

LSSC offers guidance in filling out FAFSA

By: Kevin Trinidad
Photo By: Kevin Trinidad

Akram Latib signing it at the Financial Aid office.
Toward the end of your senior year in high school, the talk about FAFSA, Free Application for Federal Student Aid, is brought up, and the notions that cause stress and confuse people too: it must be filled out as early as possible, Bright Futures will not be dispersed without it. If you put certain answers for specific question your chances of being rewarded more money increase; and the fact that graduating and filling out FAFSA should happen unanimously.

Even after high school, FAFSA calls for a renewal every year, which is toward the end of the Spring Semester. The Deadline for the state of Florida is May 15. FAFSA is utilized at a tool to award grants, loans, work study, and scholarships.

Every Friday up until April 25, the South Lake and Leesburg Financial Aid offices will be offering assistance and guidance to students seeking help with FAFSA. The service is by appointment only, thus calling ahead would be beneficial; for Leesburg call 352-365-3567 and for South Lake call 352-536-2157.

In order to make the service efficient and decrease the time, students should set their Federal Student Aid Personal Identification Number at prior to arriving. Along with having a PIN, student are required to bring: 1) 2013 tax information, 2) Social Security Card, 3) Driver’s License, 4) Alien Registration Card (eligible non-citizens), 5) your parents information for numbers 1, 2, & 3 (only required for dependent students), and your FAFSA PIN number.

The times available for appointments are 9 a.m. – 11 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. ­– 3 P.M. On the Leesburg campus, the Financial Aid office can be found in the Student Services Building; while at South Lake, it can be found in Building 1 near the administrative offices.

Akram Latib, a student at LSSC, is definitely going to take advantage of this counseling, “I had trouble filling [FAFSA] out in high school, but with the help of these financial advisors I’m sure everything will go smoothly.” Though this is Latib’s first time speaking to an advisor, he is sure to come back, “I did not think speaking to one was important, but with all the help they offer, I will visit them any time I have a question or need help with school related stuff.”

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Lunar eclipse and meteor showers coming this April

Story by: Katie McKay, Staff Writer
Photos by: Katie McKay

The Earth's shadow will cover the full moon on the night of the 14th this month
Some spectacular celestial sights are expected this April, starting with a lunar eclipse on the night of the 14 and culminating with the peak of the Lyrid meteor shower on the night of April 22.

The lunar eclipse will take about five and half hours from start to finish, but totality – where the moon is completely covered – lasts only an hour and half. These eclipses occur when Earth is positioned exactly between the sun and moon. In that hour and a half window, the moon will appear blood red due to light from the sun being bent around Earth by our atmosphere, giving it an eerie look that has been occasionally said to signal the end times and judgment day. Before and after the eclipse most stars around the moon will be hidden by its light, but during totality these stars will reappear brightly in the dark sky.

Lunar eclipses are visible to everyone on the night side of the earth, unlike solar eclipses, which are only visible in select places where the moon’s shadow crosses the ground. To witness this event in its entirety, observers can start watching at 1 a.m. on April 15. Those who just want to see totality can set their alarms for 3 a.m.

From April 16–25, observers have a chance of seeing bright streaks of light in the sky from the Lyrid meteor shower. The peak time to view them will be on the night of April 22 and the following morning, when 15-20 meteors are expected to cross the heavens each hour.

Random meteors can be seen on any given night of the year, but meteor showers occur when Earth’s orbit passes through a trail of dust left by a comet. Bits of rock from the comet’s passing hit earth’s atmosphere like bugs on a cosmic windshield and burn up, leaving glowing streaks of various sizes and intensities across the sky. Meteor showers are yearly occurrences; this one is called the Lyrids because the meteors appear to streak outward from the constellation Lyra. Though they will seem to originate from a certain point, the meteors can be seen in any part of the sky.

In addition to these events, several planets will be visible to the naked eye throughout the month. Jupiter will appear to be a bright star in the constellation Gemini, located to the west as night falls. At the same time in the east, Mars will look like a red star. This planet reaches opposition on April 8, meaning that it will be directly overhead at midnight and slightly brighter and closer than usual. Saturn currently rises around 11 p.m. in the southeastern sky and will have a slight orange tint. On April 16, Saturn and the moon will appear to be right next to each other. Anyone who gets up early has probably already seen Venus, which looks like an extremely bright star in the east before sunrise.
Even small telescopes can see the bands and moons of Jupiter, the rings around Saturn, the phases of Venus, and possibly the polar ice caps on Mars.

A telescope can reveal many details of planets like Saturn and Jupiter.

The campus cranes

Comic by: Katie McKay

Monday, April 7, 2014

VIP foods leaving Leesburg campus after 10 years of service

Story by: Katie McKay, Staff Writer
Photos by: Katie McKay

Larry Jackson currently operates VIP foods with his camera-shy wife, Verdia.
Larry and Verdia Jackson, owners of Lake-Sumter State College’s VIP foods, will not be returning in the fall of 2014. They are retiring after ten years at LSSC, and so far the college has not found a replacement for them.

The husband and wife team started off cooking through a contract for Central Florida Community College in Ocala. Larry Jackson became manager once the restaurant turned into a culinary kitchen. Later, he and his wife were asked to work at LSSC. Verdia Jackson came first, with her husband following a year later. “Been here ever since,” Larry says.

A little known fact is that the restaurant’s title is actually Verdia’s nickname. “That’s where VIP comes from,” says Larry. “They called her VIP for short. That was her nickname.” Verdia likes to add the traditional acronym as well. “Very important person,” she says with a smile.

They are retiring so that they can see their grandchildren, and leaving with no ill will toward the school. “It’s been great,” Larry says. “The students, faculty, staff…they’re like family. We’ve enjoyed the ride. You’ve got to like what you’re doing, and we like coming down here. Everybody’s been good to us; the students really support us. We appreciate it, and we’ll come down and pay [everyone] a visit.”

Student Shakitta Jones orders lunch from VIP foods.
Shakitta Jones was one of many students who didn't yet know that VIP foods is leaving. She was shocked when she heard the news, but said, “I wish them many fun vacations,” once she learned that they were retiring. “They are very respectful people; they love to serve people.”

Annett Sthreshley already knew about their coming absence. In regard to what she will do in the fall semester, she jokingly says that she will starve to death, adding, “I don’t know yet.” Jacob Miller, who will graduate this term, says, “I’m happy for them. I leave when they leave.”

Avoid stress by turning to Student Tutors

By: Mark Valentino, Features Writer
Photos: Mark Valentino

It is that time of the semester again, when anxiety and serious cramming start to affect the student body as a whole. Do not fear if you are still not quite getting a few concepts in your math class or are having trouble discerning the pancreas from the spleen; Fret not, the learning center has tutors to aid you in accomplishing your goals.

Better at group learning? Get some study buddies
 and start a study group
The Student tutors that are always on staff are more than willing to assist you with whatever subject you need. " I have been a tutor here for over a year now, I spent a lot of time on campus to begin with so it felt like a natural fit. It(tutoring) helps keep me sharp and I get to assist fellow students who need help." Kim Emery explained as she sat along side Sana Mahmaud, who also felt strongly about the learning center "Coming to the learning center is really a treat to the students, It is really helping me enhance my skills to be a better student."

Sana Mahmaud, and Kim Emery take a moment to smile
before getting back to the books.
Lost internet unexpectedly and the library is filled with other students trying to get their homework done as well? Swing by the Student Center, they have 24 laptops and 24 transformer tablets that are fully equipped with Windows 8 along with the entire Office suite. Brian Tillman was busy working on one of new HP laptops doing his math homework, when asked what he thought about the new laptops that are available he thought it was a great thing for the student body. " If you don't have the internet at home, you can grab a tablet or a laptop and get all your online homework done. Also if you don't understand part of the material, then you have the tutors right here to help you, and that is a big plus for me."
Bryan Tillman using one of the 24 laptops
 available for student use.
With all the advantages of the learning center students should find all the help and assistance they need to succeed while at LSSC.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Quotes around campus bring inspiration

By: Kevin Trinidad
Photos By: Kevin Trinidad

Growing up, most elementary and middle schools have obnoxious posters on display in classrooms and around campus, reminding students to eat their vegetables, the importance of recycling, fire prevention, having good behavior, the effects of bullying, and why getting good grades is crucial.

Those days are long-gone, and now college has taken over; the place where your major says more about you than your personality, where recess and nap time have been replaced by countless hours of studying, and where education comes at a value.

Up around campus, in bathrooms and on bulletin boards, one can find what appears to be hidden quotes. These little gems can easily go unnoticed, but if you look carefully, you will find them and they might just brighten up a dull day, or ignite a sense of creativity and inspiration in someone.

Shelby Ratliff, a student at LSSC, enjoys these quotes, “One morning I came to school not necessarily in a bad mood, but I saw and read a quote by Albert Einstein that made me feel good.”

Whereas posters still exist in college, they tend to be in more neutral and monotone colors, advising students of scholarship opportunities, information on continuing your education at a higher level university, and events going on around campus.