Intern Q&A Matheus Duarte

Bio Matheus Duarte was born in Brazil and moved to the states at a young age. While growing up, he quickly picked up on the idea that being involved in the local community was something of importance to him. As an adult he has been involved in some community projects. Matheus Duarte graduate from the University of North Georgia with a Bachelor’s in marketing and is currently working as a Content Marketing Strategist at GAsHIFT.   What inspires you to get involved in the political process? The main thing that inspires me to get involved in the political process is that I was a US resident for many years. With that comes the inability to vote. During that time I saw how important voting is because only after getting my citizenship was I able to vote and get more involved in my community. I now know that voting is something that everyone needs to be involved in. Voting is what this country was founded on and the fact that Americans have the freedom to vote is a reason in its self not to take it for granted. There are many countries out there where citizens have no rights and that is because of how their country was founded. Here in America, we were founded with the belief that everyone has a right to vote and thats why I would like to be more involved in the voting process. If you could meet any historical figure who would you choose and why? I would choose Abraham Lincoln. I would like to meet him because of what he did during is...

Let’s Talk About HOPE and College Access

Since its creation in 1993, the HOPE scholarship has been instrumental in making post secondary education more accessible for students. However, due to changes made in 2011, the window of opportunity is becoming smaller and smaller. According to a report done by Georgia Budget & Policy Institute senior education policy analyst Claire Suggs, fewer students are receiving HOPE than ever before. Once covering a student’s full tuition costs, the HOPE program now only provides partial tuition coverage for most. The requirements for receiving HOPE have also become stricter, requiring a 3.0 GPA, high SAT or ACT scores and at least four college-level courses such as advanced placement classes. Higher requirements as well as an age restriction preventing those who are seven years out of high school from obtaining HOPE, result in a smaller number of people being able to continue their education. Other HOPE programs include the Zell Miller Scholarship, granting full tuition to those with a 3.7 GPA in addition to high SAT or ACT scores and four college-level courses, the HOPE grant for those completing a degree or certificate at a technical college requiring a 2.0 GPA and the Zell Miller grant that requires a 3.5 GPA and covers full tuition costs. Both the HOPE and Zell Miller Scholarship are more likely to go to middle and high-income students. The new requirements affect students of various race and ethnicities, however those hit the hardest are black students with an amazing 80 percent not receiving HOPE. Without the aid of HOPE, students are left struggling to pay for tuition and other mandatory fees. To mitigate the issue, the...

10 Helpful Websites for College Students

Chegg A website where you can rent new or used textbooks for a low price. Don’t feel restricted by your college bookstore – rentals, used books and digital downloads are usually always cheaper and easier. If Chegg doesn’t have what you need, try textbookrentals.com, thriftbooks.com, campusbooks.com or amazon.com (the latter even offers a discount on Prime for students.) GroupMe A chat app that’s great for group projects. Instead of having to keep track of communication through emails and texts, GroupMe makes it so all of your conversations are in one convenient place. Similar apps are WhatsApp and Slack, which allows you upload documents into group messages.   Evernote Evernote is useful for people who like to take notes. The app makes it so that all the notes you take on your phone or computer is available across all of your devices. You can use it for notes, images, documents, etc.   Habitica Sometimes people need a little extra incentive to keep up their productivity. Habitica can help you “gamify” your duties, but only if you allow it to. It’s is a free habit building and productivity app that treats your daily tasks like an RPG game, providing you with in-game rewards and punishments to help motivate you. Complete a task to earn gold, or fail to do something and lose some health. It can be especially effective if used among a group (roommates, coworkers, club members, etc). However, you have to be willing and able to be completely honest with yourself about your productivity. Other productivity apps include Site Block, Momentum App and Forest App.   Purdue OWL This site...

Financial Aid: Explained

School will be starting back next month and it’s important to understand the basics of paying for your education. In 2014-15, about two-thirds of full-time students paid for college with the help of financial aid in the form of grants and scholarships, but sometime the process can be difficult to navigate. Below is a helpful guide explaining a few aspects regarding student financial aid, but it is recommended to do additional research and visit your financial aid office at school. FAFSA The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is a form that can be prepared annually by current and prospective college students (undergraduate and graduate) in the United States to determine their eligibility for student financial aid. Beginning with the 2017-2018 academic year, the FAFSA is made available to the public on October 1 and is recommended that students fill it out as soon as possible. Types of Aid Hope Scholarship In Georgia, HOPE Scholarships are merit-based awards — independent of family income — and available to all students from Georgia pursuing an undergraduate degree. They pay for tuition at any in-state two- or four-year college or university and most fees. The tuition award amount is determined annually by the Georgia Student Finance Commission as a “per credit hour rate” which is published on their website. All HOPE programs require students to meet basic requirements. An eligible student must: Meet HOPE’s U.S. citizenship or eligible non-citizen requirements Be a legal resident of Georgia Be in compliance with Selective Service registration requirements Be in good standing on all student loans or other financial aid programs Be in compliance with the Georgia Drug-Free Postsecondary Education Act of 1990 Not...

Meet Damita Glaude: Editorial Intern

Damita Glaude’s involvement in politics is relatively new as this will be her first real foray into activism and organizing. Her training as a journalist and experiences in college provided an opportunity to learn about issues affecting the people around her as well as outside communities. Now, Damita, who has a bachelor’s in communication from Kennesaw State University, hopes to use her skills to inform and advocate for change. Q&A What inspires you to get involved in the political process? My freshman year in college was instrumental in helping me develop a voice and a passion for helping people. Growing up, I thought that politics was an old man’s game. I would never know enough to ever get involved. But change starts where you are, using the tools you have access to. College taught me that you can make a difference by using the unique skills and voice you have and I think I finally have enough courage to do so. If you could meet any historical figure, who would you choose and why? I would love to meet Audre Lorde. Lorde’s thoughts on women in academia, queer women navigating life and personal politics are still relevant decades after her passing. Her contributions to feminism are unquestionable and I would love to ask her questions on how to be a better activist. Her quote, “Your silence will not protect you,” still shakes me as someone who has tried so hard in the past not to rock the boat and speak up for what I believe in. How do you recharge? I recharge by disengaging. Constantly absorbing news and discussing...

Meet Malav Shah: Web Development Intern

  Malav is a web and software developer from India who currently resides in NJ – though he’s usually on the road having adventures just as often as he isn’t. Presently, he is completing his graduation in Computer Science from Stevens Institute of Technology. He enjoys the challenge of crafting beautiful and intuitive experiences out of seemingly complex interactions. When he is not coding, you’ll typically find him watching movies or hanging out with his buddies.   Q&A   What inspires you to get involved in the political process? I am very much interested in the politics since my childhood. I grew up in Vadodara, western part of India where India’s current prime minister belongs to. The culture of the area is that is a norm and expectation for the citizens to be involved in the political process since early childhood days. Everyone is taught to get involved in the political process to learn more about it and to ensure a strong democracy. Since my childhood days, I am watching the political processes taking place around me. My uncle is very much very active in politics and has taught me many ways to be a successful candidate in the political process.   If you could meet any historical figure, who would you choose and why? There are many historical figures I would love to meet like Franklin D. Roosevelt, Mahatma Gandhi, Abraham Lincoln, but among all of them would be George Washington. The Founding father of The United States of America, George Washington, is till date one of the greatest leaders that we have ever seen. He led the American...