Six Simple Workouts: Dorm Edition

Tyrone Farmer | Staff Writer

College can be strenuous, and as a result, so can your eating habits. It may seem cumbersome to stay on track with your health and diet between the cafe’s food, fast food, and many snacks at random.

Sometimes working out in public gyms can come with reluctance, so here are six dorm-friendly workouts you can try.

Pushups

Pushups are a good starter for any workout. They focus on the upper body, keying on the chest muscles, shoulders, triceps and abdomen. To get the perfect pushup, start in a plank position with your arms shoulder width apart. 

Lower your entire body, keeping your head up and back flat. Push back up to the starter position and engage your core. An ideal starter set is 10 to 15 pushups for three sets.

Situps

Situps are a great way to get your entire core involved in the workout. Lay down flat on your back with your feet flat on the floor. There are two standard forms for your arms: cross your arms at your chest or put them behind your head. 

Raise your torso until you are upright, looking at your knees. Slowly lower your torso until you are back in the resting position. Repeat this process 20 to 25 reps for three sets.

Air squats

Air squats are the perfect workout for engaging the thighs, hamstrings and glutes. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart. Tighten your core as you squat. 

Get low as if you were modeling a chair. Make sure to keep your weight on your heels and your back straight. Again, repeat this process for 20 to 30 reps for three sets.

Walking lunge

The walking lunge is a beneficial method for building up your leg muscles. Start by taking a step forward with one leg while simultaneously tightening your core. 

This first motion engages the glutes, hamstrings and quads. Bend the same leg until your knee touches the ground and pause for a second. Raise your knee and do the same thing with the opposite leg. 

The exercise should mimic an exaggerated walking motion. Repeat 10 to 12 reps for three sets.

Leg raises

Leg raises engage the upper body and lower body. The lower and upper abs, quads and back muscles are advanced as you go through this exercise. Start by lying flat on your back with your hands placed directly below your glutes. 

Next, bring your feet 6 inches off the ground. Begin to raise your feet straight up to a 90-degree angle while everything else stays in place. As you lower your feet back down, remember to block them from hitting the ground. 

This exercise is sure to get your abdomen burning! Repeat 10 to 20 reps for three sets.

Planks

Planks are always an ideal way to end a workout. The plank position, similar to the pushup position, rests on the toes, but the upper body pressure is on your elbows. Planks fully engage your core, working all abdominal muscles. 

This is often used as a cool-down, yet this exercise will leave your core burning. Repeat this for 15- to 30-second reps for three sets.

If you feel inclined to get out, walking is always a good form of exercise. But the cold weather is here, so make sure to bundle up!

Five Natural Hair Tips for Cool Weather

Tyrone Farmer | Staff Writer

The colder seasons can feel like a dream bringing much joy, like the holiday season, family time and other festivities, but it can be a nightmare for anyone with natural hair. 

The cold air causes hair to dry and frizz, which could consequently cause breakage of hair. 

Hats, scarves and hoodies seem to be the answer, but the materials are typically very harsh and rub your hair, causing it to break off even more. 

It can seem unbearable and leave you wanting to avoid the weather at all costs, but here are five essential tips you need to know to maintain your natural hair through these trying and cold months.

  1. Keep your hair moisturized.

Maintaining moisture is the biggest key in keeping your hair looking fresh and complete through the winter months. The crisp air will not hesitate to dry the natural oils out of your scalp. To combat this, apply products such as black castor oil and coconut oil. These are affordable, lightweight options to ensure that your scalp is not dry. Massage the oils into your scalp to lock in moisture, increase hair thickness and growth. A good routine to use for moisturizing is the LOC method. The LOC method includes a leave-in-conditioner to hydrate the hair and scalp, oil to lock in the moisture and cream to define curls, leaving them looking good as new.

  1. Condition bi-weekly

Deep conditioners are the perfect remedy needed to get the full, curly look you want to achieve. Try to find all-natural conditioners that work best with your hair type and give you a look you want. Stay away from conditioners with chemicals, which may cause harm in the future. Products using natural oils such as sunflower seed oil and aloe vera might be more suitable. These are perfect ingredients to use since they are thicker oils. Also, apply the conditioner to your roots and let it sit for about 20 minutes.  

You can never condition too much!

  1. Use protective styles

Protective styles will be your best friend over these next three to five months. They play a crucial role in preventing natural hair from weather damage. With wearing your hair out, it will eventually begin to dry up. Protective styles hold the moisture in hair longer and allow less maintenance. Try going for a classic box braids look or even faux locs. Both look and work great for keeping your hair healthy.

  1. Set a routine

Keeping a set routine is an essential factor that often gets overlooked. Your hair, just like anything else, needs to be trained. A routine isn’t just the products and steps taken to style the hair. It also includes everything done to maintain the hair.  To keep hair from breaking off at night, try sleeping with satin bonnets or pillows. Having scheduled days and times for your hair ensures that your hair receives the proper care it needs. Remember also to drink plenty of water.  

Your diet can have as much of an effect on your hair as the weather. 

  1. Trim

Don’t be afraid to cut your hair during this cold stretch. Wearing your hair out means that your ends are prone to split because of the exposure. If your hair is left neglected, it will continue to split and eventually cause the hair to break off. To make sure that your hair continues to grow evenly, remember to trim your ends. 

Do’s and Don’ts of the Public Library

Noah Hogan | Staff Writer

While students have experienced both incredible highs and possible lows with the passings of both Homecoming and midterm exams, we have reached a pivotal point in the school year. As we continue through the second half of the first semester, students will be looking to buckle down and find a quiet space to complete their assignments.

Campus amenities such as the university library and other free and available workspaces will be more crowded than usual.

While universal rules are posted in most libraries, rules are not universally followed.

Here are some tips on creating the best atmosphere and library experience for yourself and your classmates working just as hard in the William R. & Norma B. Harvey Library. 

This is a list of Do’s and Don’ts when visiting the library.  

DO’s: 

Do respect the library faculty and obey their policy. Respect librarians and helpers, as these are knowledgeable individuals who can help you in any way you need. 

Do respect the university’s materials. Although tempting, typical note-taking actions such as highlighting, page folding and underlining library books are taboo. Some books or collections cannot be replaced by the library as simply as popular or mainstream items. Be considerate of fellow students and return the material in the state as you found it.

Do return reading materials and books to where you found them. If you don’t remember or are not sure, ask a faculty member. Shelved books in the wrong location can be challenging for library workers to find and students as well.

“I’ve been in the library not only for a useful workspace but also to find and use textbooks for my classwork,” said Brandon Davis, a junior Kinesiology major. “It’s kind of frustrating when stuff is in the right place or flat out not there.”

DON’Ts

Don’t be noisy. The library is one of the few tried and true free public spaces used by primarily students and educators.

The university library has provided designated areas in the main building and a 24-hour study area for collaborative efforts. They are effectively allowing you to communicate with your friends or group members if necessary. If you find yourself working alone, be considerate of those around you and try to keep conversations to a minimum. 

“If you want to socialize, go to the Stu,” said Jeremiah Williams, a junior journalism and communications student. “Don’t interrupt me and my study time for pointless conversation.”

Don’t take up group rooms or large spaces if you don’t intend on being productive. These are very limited yet constantly and understandably in demand. Taking desk space or occupying computers for your friends is thoughtless, especially during exam periods. 

“One of my biggest pet peeves is people asking me how long I am going to be in a study room while they have a bag of Wendy’s in their hand,” Williams said.

While packing a light snack or bringing a bottle of water is encouraged to remain attentive, don’t overstep by bringing overly noisy or smelly dishes into the space. Even though the nourishment you bring might be a necessity to keep yourself on task, it could be a major distraction to those around you. 

Furthermore, make sure to clean up after yourself when eating or to drink anywhere in the library. Seeing food wrappers and empty water bottles is an unpleasant sight, especially around computers or pieces of equipment. 

Don’t be afraid to interact with the library staff. Even though the library is regarded as a quiet space, it is OK for you to communicate to someone that you need help with book recommendations for your projects and assignments. As long as you remain respectful, librarians are a great starting point for any type of research-based task.

Walking the Line of Purpose

Alfred Johnson | Staff Writer

As I wake up and make my way to the mirror every morning, I always find myself asking two questions: What does the day have in store for me? Whatever it may be, am I ready for it?

The older we get, the more serious questions like this can get.

Most of us are either taking our first real steps into life or are well enough into it. College is arguably the best place to learn about what you want to do, but more importantly, it’s one of the best places to learn about yourself and what you want in life.

As young adults in college, we usually use school as the go-to for motivation, but there’s more to life than school. Many people like talking about staying on the grind and having no days off, but what’s the goal at the end of the day?

Is this constant grind going to lead to a fulfilling life or just satisfy temporary desires?

At this period in our lives, we should be focusing on what path we want to walk down. Most people get lost in the wind, trying to hold on to something, but if you’re not sure about something, your grip will loosen further.

My mind goes in a lot of different directions, so I understand uncertainty. Even on the worst of days, I try to remember what I want in life and why.

Things can get rough, hectic and even confusing enough for you to be frustrated and lost. The question isn’t if you want to keep you going or not. It’s if you want the result of your legacy to be worth as much effort as you’re putting in.

There’s nothing wrong with getting extra credit on assignments and working extra shifts at your job. The issue is when you overexert yourself for something you didn’t need to do.

You’ll hear phrases a lot in life such as, “Work smarter, not harder,” and “If you want it done right, do it right the first time.” Too many people fall into trust traps and end up in bad situations. If you care enough about how you want your future to look, know what you’re putting yourself through, and learn how to say “no.”

It’s OK to want more from life. Plenty of people are still doing what they can to get higher on the ladder to success. That determination is what brings you where you need to be.

It’s OK to take your time and be strategic. Things happen all the time in life, and we get thrown off track. Being organized and planning for the expected and a bit for the unexpected shows how careful you are.

Even being undecided is OK as long as you’re safe about whatever it is you want to do.

Things may look hazy at the moment, but you aren’t counted out. There are a lot of things that can help you find your way. If you give life enough time and patience, whatever you need will be ready for you when you need it most.  

Many young adults are doing their best to move through life, navigating through work and assignments, not knowing much about what’s going on. It may seem that, at times, we are flailing through life with no sense of concrete direction. We need that pressure to motivate ourselves to be better, but at the same time, we can’t let that pressure cause us to collapse before we get a chance to see our potential.

The key is to do what feels right at this moment and learn from when things go wrong. Our potential as well-adjusted individuals grows as we gain more life experiences and learn from them. The potential is spotted when the care is presented, and time is too short not to take your first steps.

Five Tips for Students Adjusting Back To Campus

Noah Hogan | Staff Writer 

Since March 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed daily life as we know it. 

During our confinement, the pandemic left us with many questions. The one big one was: What would a full-scale, on-campus operation look like?

As students have returned roughly 18 months after Hampton University initially closed its doors and transitioned to remote learning, adjusting back to an on-campus lifestyle can be difficult for recent high school graduates and continuing students alike. 

For university students looking for guidance during these trying times, these are five tips for adjusting back to campus.

1. Communication with your classmates is vital 

 Every day we are reminded of the ongoing pandemic by the usage of masks. Still, communication with your fellow peers is of the utmost importance. 

As the classic saying goes, “Closed mouths don’t get fed.” It is impossible for those around you to understand what your needs are when you isolate yourself and never open up to those around you. 

Whether it’s catching up on missed assignments or creating a group dynamic within a challenging class, the person next to you is often in a similar position. 

“Talking with people in this climate can be difficult because it’s already hard enough to understand people with their mask, but the added measure of staying safe makes for a weird dynamic on campus,” said Quevon Jackson, an exercise science major at Old Dominion University. “Being in a classroom with nearly 200 students, it forces me to act outside of myself and interact with people that I probably would never say a word to.”

2. Time management is of the utmost importance

Time management can either make or break one’s collegiate experience. As students transition from an at-home classroom setup back to traditional forms of education, time management is a deal breaker. 

With students joining different clubs and extracurricular activities, it is essential to manage time wisely to spread your energy evenly to various outlets. 

“This year for me, time management is super important,” said Jackson. “As a fourth year in my junior year, I have more responsibility such as working to support myself, my grades and my health.”

3. Keep contact back home 

As students get back to campus, anticipation to see old friends and flings from years prior rises. However, when workloads begin to get heavy, the campus can become a lonely place. 

It can be very easy to forget about your support system back home when they are out of sight and out of mind. Set up weekly phone calls with friends and family back home to keep your connections close to keep your morale high. 

“I actually talk to my two sisters almost every day and my mom practically every day,” said Miah Cox, a Hampton University journalism major. “I’m very close with my family. They’re basically my village.” 

4. Take YOU time 

Although taking time for oneself can be considered selfish, it is an essential need for returning to the classroom. Take at least one day out of the week to make sure you are resting and relaxing. 

Balancing classes, extracurricular obligations, friends, family and the pandemic is a lot for any student. It takes time to adjust to a new normal. Taking a day to reflect on your emotions and mental state is necessary. 

“Since my lighter workload days are Tuesdays, I use those days to organize my dorm or maybe wash clothes,” Cox said. “Having a clear space helps me have a clear mental space.”

5. Be adaptable 

Remember, Hampton’s campus has not been open for nearly a year and a half. This is a new experience for every student and faculty member involved. Things will not be perfect, and there will be change. 

Control the variables that you can control. Be adaptable. 

Hampton University Traditions

 Nia White | Staff Writer

Hampton University has had many traditions in the past 153 years. Some of these traditions have stayed the same and others have evolved to fit current society. Some of the traditions for freshmen have changed since 1966, with the requirements for men and women being different.

  One of the unique continued Hampton traditions is curfew for the freshman students. 

“Female freshmen had to be in the dorm at night by 9:00pm during the week and 11:00 pm on the weekends” Carey Shorter, Class of 1970 said.

“My most memorable moment at Hampton is running back from Holland with my friends to meet curfew in pre-college. It was our first Holland and we totally forgot that we had a curfew ( a lot of people forgot) so we literally had about 5 minutes to get from Holland [Hall] to Moton. There were so many people running around campus trying to get back to their dorms. Although we were cutting it close it was so fun cutting it close with a bunch of peers,” said Nicole Lowery, a current junior.

  The Freshman dorms are a rich part of Hampton culture because of the relationships that are built there.

“I lived in Davidson Hall and we were known as the Davidson Divas. Freshman dorms were known to have unique names and represented proudly even until today,” said Jenisha Henneghan, an alumni of the Class of 2000. “There was also a Freshman Step Show between the dorms and we represented with custom shirts.”  

  “I enjoyed my freshman dorm, Kennedy Honors Hall  and it was really my RA’s that’s made me enjoy Kennedy so much. They were so full of life and wanted to get to know me, it was great knowing that the upperclassmen wanted to know who I was,” Lowery said.

  The curfew is a mandated rule and is applied to all incoming freshmen. However, freshmen used to be subject to other forms of initiation into the “Hampton Family.”  

  When Carey Shorter ‘70 was a freshman, he recalls when freshman had to wear beanies. 

“Freshmen had to wear beanie caps during the first 2 weeks of classes. After the beanie requirement was met, freshmen were members of the Hampton family,” said Shorter.

  Another important part of Hampton tradition is attire. Some of the attire of Hampton students has changed over the time.  

“When attending a class we could not wear shorts or t-shirts, women had to wear dresses,” Shorter said.

  In more recent years Hampton business attire has only been required for certain events.

“During our freshman year we were also taught Ogden attire.  Everyone knew that meant dress business or business casual. No sneakers or jeans were allowed for certain events such as guest speakers or Convocation. You would be sent to change if you were not dressed appropriately,” Henneghan ‘00  said.

The Hampton attire has taught students how to prepare for the workforce.

  “The Hampton culture is business [professional], we are the standard of excellence; so I wasn’t  surprised we had to dress up a lot. I actually dress up a lot in business clothes because most of the settings I was going into required that, but I also think it prepares us for the real world,” Lowery said.

  There are also attendance requirements for students across all classifications. “[We] had to attend ¾ of a class , and maintain a 2.0 average. Minimum hours to be a full time student was 12 hours,” Shorter said. Attendance requirements also included events outside of class.

Although some may not like or agree with certain Hampton traditions, they have certainly  prepared students for their lives beyond their home by the sea. 

“I worked for IBM as a Technical writer, then went into the army for 3 years.  I then attended the University of New Mexico and took computer science courses. After receiving my masters, I returned to IBM as an electrical engineer,” Shorter said.

  “After graduating from Hampton, I attended Virginia Commonwealth University for Graduate School and received a Doctor of Physical Therapy Degree,” Henneghan said.

  “Hampton has prepared me for my career.  Even though we complained about the dress code and Ogden Attire, I am appreciative of that guidance. Hampton prepared us to know how to dress for all occasions, Henneghan said.

Although some traditions might seem a bit tedious, there is a purpose for all of it. Nicole Lowery said it best, “As African American people, we are often looked down upon or sought out to be less successful, but when we dress like it, talk like it, walk like it and act like it there is no way that people won’t see how we’ve been groomed for what the professional world is throwing at us.”  

Voices of Black Literature: Margaret Daramola

Mia Concepcion | Staff Writer

Photo Courtesy of Margaret Daramola

Black literature keeps Black thought alive. It conveys the experiences that Africans and African-Americans have undergone from the past until now. Their words, taking multiple forms in books, poetry, and songs, tell stories that will live on forever and never be forgotten. Although threatened when they raised their voices, the truth behind what it means to be Black was much more important.

A Hampton University sophomore is making an impact with her poetry and recently released book, A Pathway through Survival.  Margaret Daramola, an English major from Switzerland, released a collection of poems written during different points of her life.  It took her two years to finish writing her book.

“I took my time with each poem. I wanted the collection to be raw and relatable. I wanted my readers to find language for their suppressed feelings; those overwhelming emotions that they experience, yet know how to describe,” Daramola remarked.

Daramola began writing as a way to express herself. 

“I was going through an emotional turmoil when I first decided to start writing a book. I knew that things would eventually get better, because they always have. But this time, I just had to document my journey,” said Daramola.

Being an extrovert, there were some things that she needed to handle privately, and poetry was the best way to do this. She’s influenced by a broad spectrum of poets, including Titilope Sonugua. 

“For certain poets, I actually admire their slam poetry more than their writtens ones,” she said.  

Daramola highlighted the differences between slam poetry and written poetry, and why she loves both.

“Slam poetry is visual. It allows people to see emotions that are written on the page,” Daramola explained. “Written poetry conveys those emotions just through the page, and that takes a lot of practice.”

Following the publishing of her book, Maragarat’s next plan is to make it available in other languages. An audiobook is also on the way for those who would like to listen to it on the go. 

Maya Angelou, a poet whose works of art remain timeless, is among those that have made contributions to Black literature. After enduring a traumatic rape, Angelou lost her voice to only find it again. Her voice came back stronger, and her mouth filled with a message she wanted the world to hear. Angelou began publishing her collections of poems in volumes, some of them including Just Give Me a Cool Drink of Water ’fore I Diiie (1971), And Still I Rise (1978), Now Sheba Sings the Song (1987), and I Shall Not Be Moved (1990). Her other most famous poems include I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings and Still I rise.  Although Angelou died in 2014, readers will always have something to cling to and read the impactful words she left behind. 

One of the greatest songstresses in African-American history was Billie Holiday. Holiday used her sultry sound to inform her listeners on the injustice that black folk had to endure. Known for her track “Strange Fruit,” which ranked number 4 on the pop charts in 1939, according to Billboard. “Strange Fruit” was both a hit and a hindrance to Holiday’s career.  The poem-turned-song was a reminder of Holiday’s father’s death, and the lynchings that continued in the South. 

According to Eudie Pak, an LA based freelance writer for Biography, states that this anthem was problematic. Activists embraced her top-charting record while others rejected it, bringing Holiday enemies that would haunt her until death. Harry Anslinger, the appointed commissioner of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics, emphatically tried to pin her for selling heroin. He deemed this as payback for Holiday’s refusal to stop singing the “song of the century”  Strange fruit. He and his men even ordered doctors to neglect treating Holiday’s medical needs in the hospital as she was battling cirrhosis. Her story is tragic, but her legacy lives on through the songs she sang. Her truth that she dared to share was a sign of bravery, and fans always remember her for that.

Class of 2021: Our Story

Shirmarie Starks | Staff Writer

It is crazy to think that the beloved Ogre Phi Ogre 17 class will be graduating on May 9, 2021. For Ahmaad Edmund, a senior political science major, leadership studies minor from Louisville, KY,  one word to describe his experience at Hampton is, “INCOMPARABLE!” As our time at our beloved institution comes to an end, we reflect on our time we spent as Hampton University students, and the lessons we learned while here. From nine graduating seniors, here are their stories:

Freshman Year

For most of them, their journey started on August 25, 2017 when they were inducted in Ogden Hall and were officially Hamptonians. They arrived bright-eyed and ready to have the glorious Hampton experience! Coming in, some advice that Brooke Beebe, a senior kinesiology pre-med major from Detroit, MI, wishes she would have received is that “Preparation is key, and to not procrastinate on assignments or studying. And to also, step out of your comfort zone by getting involved on campus!”

From the first Holland (shoutout to the lucky ones who made it inside), to the first (and last for a while) 12-2, to the first homecoming, and finally getting off of curfew after homecoming, the first semester at Hampton was great! Second semester arrived, and as they continued their studies, they also had more fun. 

They celebrated freshman week and administration allowed for the return of 12-2’s! Ogre 17 was the first class to participate in the fashion show, no one knew what to expect. Representing the south (a.k.a. SOUFSIDE), Gabe Sanders, a senior sports management major from Atlanta, GA, says, “The fashion show wasn’t anything how I expected it to be, but I ended up having a great time and meeting some great people throughout the event. I’m glad I had a chance to step outside my comfort zone and make some great memories.” 

Sophomore Year

After a summer break filled with travel, internships and plenty of rest, sophomore year came, and they were back and better! They knew how to navigate campus and a large portion of the class moved off campus. They especially loved that they had NO curfew. But, not even three weeks on campus, all had to evacuate for what was best described as the “Hurrication.” 

After coming back, they attended more classes and prepared for what would soon be known as HUCHELLA. 

“My favorite memory from sophomore year would definitely have to be homecoming,” said senior biology pre-med from Charles County, MD, Tyler Alves. “From the carnival to the block party, to the Lil Baby concert, to the off-campus parties, to the homecoming game and tailgate, all of it was so much fun! HUCHELLA was definitely a time to remember.”

Second semester came around, and many of our classmates joined Greek-lettered organizations. They all celebrated Springfest, and had a great time at  SOJU ball wearing their all-white outfits! One main thing that Joshua Cook, a senior arts major from Chicago, IL, wishes he would have done differently during sophomore year was starting to sell his artwork earlier. Check him out on Instagram @joshovango.  Despite this, it was yet another great year for the Ogre class!

Junior Year

Junior year started with more off-campus apartments, Labor Day beach festivities, the Chris Brown Indigo tour, and the Chicago HUxHU Classic. Ogres celebrated their third homecoming with the PepsiCo x ESSENCE Tailgate Takeover where celebrities like DJ Envy (Hampton alumnus ’99) and Kash Doll came to party. Seleata McDonald, a senior psychology pre-med major from Madison, WI, says that her favorite event from junior year was the 100 Days celebration. 

“I love the camaraderie of Hampton holidays! Everyone, no matter their classification or social status, is just out having a great time together,” says McDonald.

Just a few weeks later from 100 Days on March 12, 2020, students received the news that they would be transitioning to remote learning, and need to immediately leave campus due to COVID-19.

Lessons

After receiving the news that we would remain online for the 2020-2021 academic school year, students were devastated. The entire Hampton University experience was cut short, and they would miss out on all of the senior class traditions. Despite this, the class of 2021 continued to excel and have fun virtually.  Now that they have (almost) completed our time at Hampton, they reflected on the valuable lessons that they have learned.

“Because our students are so successful, it can sometimes make you feel as though you are behind, but in reality, you are not; it is God’s timing!” said Angel Hobbs, a 4th year in the 5 year MBA program from Chesterfield, VA. “Do not compare yourself because what is for you, is for you. Your time is coming.”

“Closed mouths do not get fed,” is a saying that Rose Nguyen, a senior electrical engineering major from Buffalo, NY,  always knew growing up, but she actually applied it while being a student at Hampton. Understanding that she was responsible for herself and her future, Rose learned that she needed to speak up more when opportunities presented themselves.

Even Cliff Dwyer, a fall 2019 Hampton transfer and senior business management major from Jamaica, learned a lesson during his short time here. 

“It’s very important to be persistent in going after what you want,” said Dwyer. Though challenges and roadblocks arose, Dwyer was able to push through and reach the goals he set for himself. “Have hope, and when something is discouraging, or seems impossible, remember that you will breakthrough eventually if you stay persistent.”

The Ogre Phi Ogre 17 class of 2021 has stories that are filled with wins, failures, laughter, sadness, applause, regrets and plenty of lifelong lessons. 

As our time comes to an end, we will remember the time we spent at Hampton University, and we will truly  “let our lives do the singing!” 

Congratulations Class of 2021, you did it!

How Can You be a Better Woman?

Mia Concepcion | Staff Writer

Women are powerful. They are life-givers, agents of change, and when banded together, an unstoppable force to be reckoned with. 

However, many women have expressed that when issues arise such as lack of self-esteem and being compared to other women, it can be a major roadblock to self actualization. Another woman’s successes does not diminish your own. It must become a habit to celebrate one another instead of internalizing another’s victories as your defeat or inadequacy. Here are four ways to become the best woman you can be.

Stop living in fear

It’s so easy to hold back the real version of yourself to appease others. Trends are constantly circulating with people prepared to follow them. Step up and stand out! Be the person you envision yourself being, even if it’s uncomfortable. Go against the grain and break out of the monolithic mold society places on women. A second opinion is not always needed for the outfit you may consider wearing or the business you desire to start. The fear of being unliked, inadequate or dismissed should no longer be a thought. Don’t hold back any longer, and walk forth with confidence in your purpose. 

Former Miss Black Teen US Ambassador, Ciara White-Sparks, explained the doubts she had with confidence in pageantry, and how she overcame them.

“In order to be a winner, you have to think like a winner,” said White-Sparks. “When I go on stage, I don’t think about the competition. I think about, ‘I’ve already won this title. I’m just going to show the judges why they gave me this and know I’m going to execute it well.’”

Don’t compare yourself to other women 

Comparison is the thief of joy. It often leads to feelings of inadequacy and disappointment within oneself. Also, don’t see another woman as “better” than you. Don’t think that you have to become her just to feel good about yourself. Instead, be inspired by her, celebrate her victories with her, and see how that dose of inspiration causes you to evolve into the woman you aspire to be. Oftentimes, people notice qualities of others, wishing they had them. The truth is, you can have those qualities. In fact, you might already have them. You just have to find it. 

Practice body positivity 

Women are often burdened with the idea of having to be a certain shape or size that equates to beauty. Women have been conditioned to think that being skinny is what makes a body beautiful. However, it’s when an individual embraces the skin they are in that true beauty emanates. Therefore, love your body for what it is. Protect it and handle it with love, because it is a temple. 

Eva Davis, a senior molecular biology major and current Miss Phi Beta Sigma, shares a few practical ways to show your body more love.

“Try to find one thing you love about yourself every day and why,” said Davis. “Avoid face altering filters that will leave you questioning your true beauty.”

Practice self-love 

Self-love looks different for everyone because we all carry our own definitions of it. Therefore, fuel yourself with the activities and thoughts that drive your happiness. Do what you love, and love what you do. Do not feel the need to hold onto toxic relationships that are not worth your time. You are worth more. Invest in yourself and friendships that add value to your life. Finally, be sure to pour love into yourself in the same way that is done for others. Pouring out love can be difficult when it is done from an empty cup. 

COVID-19 Vaccine Information

Nia White | Staff Writer

A current dilemma that faces many Americans today is whether or not to get vaccinated and which vaccine they should take. Currently there are three different types: Moderna, Pfizer-BioNTech and Janseen/Johnson & Johnson. 

For Hampton students, vaccination is required for students to return to campus for the fall semester. Each of the vaccines’ goals is to “build protection” against the virus, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

  The Center for Disease Control (CDC) says “COVID-19 vaccines build immunity to the virus that causes COVID-19 without actually getting sick. It takes a few weeks for the vaccine to build the immunity, so it is possible to get the virus right after receiving the vaccination.” As with any vaccine, side effects are possible. Common side effects of all vaccines at the site of the shot are pain, redness, and swelling. The vaccines also include other side effects such as tiredness, headache, muscle pain, chills, fever, and nausea.”

  With three vaccines currently being used by the American public, each vaccine has a different method of treatment. “The Moderna vaccine is a mRNA vaccine, which produces a protein that the immune system recognizes does not belong and is prevented from replicating,” said the Mayo Clinic. According to the CDC, “the vaccination process includes two shots, 28 days apart.” The vaccine is recommended for anyone age 18 and older; however, it is not recommended for those that have had an allergic reaction to any ingredient in the vaccine, specifically polyethylene glycol. 

  “The Pfizer-BioNTech is also a mRNA vaccine, that consists of two shots, 21 days apart,” said the Mayo Clinic. “This vaccine is recommended for anyone age 16 or older, but is not recommended for anyone who has had a severe or immediate allergic reaction,” said the CDC.   

According to the Mayo Clinic, “The Janssen Pharmaceuticals Companies of Johnson & Johnson vaccine is a viral vector vaccine, which means the weakened virus is inserted into cells and the immune system responds by creating antibodies to fight the virus.” “The J&J/Janssen vaccine only requires one shot,” says the  CDC.” The J&J/ Janssen vaccine is recommended for people aged 18 and older, but not for people who are allergic to polysorbate, which is found in the vaccine. 

While there are some differences between the vaccines all essentially prevent the same thing, which is the severity and spread of COVID-19.