It’s that time of year again…







For as long as I can remember Black Friday has been the ultimate weekend for Christmas shopping. Every year, I refrain from buying anything for myself in November or December so I can focus on family and friends I should be shopping for.

In a few weeks the tradition will be carried out, but with a new wish list in mind, as to be expected. Getting the same gift for someone twice is something you definitely want to avoid. If that’s tricky for you, my method may help with brainstorming new ideas for all the ladies in your life. Between Spiritual Gangster, Walmart and Bare Minerals, shopping for my loved ones will be a breeze.

Spiritual Gangster

High-quality yoga clothing can be costly. Luckily, Spiritual Gangster Black Friday deals are off the chain. Score forty percent off everything, and not just for a single day. Get the same hookup on Spiritual Gangster Cyber Monday too. These are the cheapest prices I see all year. From women and men’s graphic tees, tanks, hoodies and sweatshirts, to accessories and items already on sale, Spiritual Gangster has Black Friday deals everyone can enjoy.


We all know Walmart has “doorbust” worthy deals, so why not plan ahead and save big on all your gifts. I recommend using the sale for tech gear. You’ll find up to 60 percent off flat-screen TVs, laptops, phones and more. The best part is, this year you don’t have to wake up early and wait in line all morning to score deals. Walmart will be celebrating Black Friday all weekend, in stores and online.

Bare Minerals

I have three sisters, two moms and lots of girlfriends. Luckily, they all like makeup. Each year I browse the Black Friday Bare Minerals mega-package deals and pick out one with 40 or so pieces. I open it up, split the makeup into ten or so presents, and everyone gets high-quality makeup, but I spend less than 100 bucks.

Following the Black Friday tradition can be done in a selfless manner. Shop for friends and family during the sale and you’ll save hundreds on Christmas gifts — not to mention continue the Thanksgiving spirit. For my fellow shoppers, I hope this guide helps you find the best gifts at the best prices. Good luck!


New south campus parking garage open for use

This year the new South College Parking Garage opened its doors to students and faculty, adding 650 new parking spaces to campus.

Construction is still underway on the fourth level and the canopy rooftop, but the first three levels are officially open for use. The garage should be complete by the end of August, after roughly a year of construction.

“We’re very pleased to have a new parking structure that aligns with campus culture sustainability,” said Fred Haberecht, the Assistant Director of Facilities Management.

In line with CSU’s sustainability efforts, the roof of the structure has the capability to set up solar panels, which will be implemented soon.

The garage will provide additional parking on the perimeter of campus, and it is located next to the transit line for commuter convenience. It will also be used to accommodate patients and employees using the new medical center, slated for completion Fall 2017.

“It’s just a good looking building,” Haberecht said. “It integrates into the campus aesthetic by sharing some of the characteristics that are common to other buildings on campus.”

Many students have voiced their complaints about how difficult it can be to find parking on campus. The University is troubleshooting this issue to accommodate the growing population of students.

“I previously have had a hard time parking on campus, but this year I purchased the commuter pass for the Z lot, so we’ll see how it goes,” said Amber Lee, a computer science student.

Permits are available for purchase, but there are also pay-per-hour spaces. Students who use the pay-per-hour spots will have the option to pay online using a phone application called Way-to-Park.

The garage will have six charging ports for electric cars, bringing the total of charging ports on campus to 24. The structure is equipped with the latest parking technology to help drivers find available spots efficiently using a light system.

“I’ve heard from other students that the commuter lots get full pretty quick,” Lee said. “I hope the project goes well, I could see myself using the garage in the future.”

This article was published in The Collegian August 23, 2016.

By the numbers: Warner College of Natural Resources

Getting good grades on tests or making it to class every day for attendance points are just means to an end, the end being graduation and, hopefully, a successful career. Students in the Warner College of Natural Resources seem to be achieving this pretty well.

This year, there are 1,813 undergraduate students in the Warner College of Natural Resources. According to the 2013-2014 First Destination Report, 86 percent of natural resources graduates had secured plans six months after graduation, with 69 percent employed.

“It’s not that way with every natural resource program across the country,” said Linda Nagel, professor and head of the Forest and Rangeland Stewardship Department. “This is pretty unique at CSU that we have such high job placement rate for students.”

There are five departments within the College of Natural Resources, and some departments have a higher chance of securing students a long-term career than others.

According to the First Destination Report, 76 percent of graduates in the Department of Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology had secured jobs six months after graduation. Kenneth Wilson, professor and head of the Department of Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology, believes his students are driven by passion for what they are studying.

There are three concentrations within the department: conservation biology, wildlife biology and fisheries and aquatic sciences.

Upward of 70 percent of students in the department have had internships.

“I put internships in the same category as work experience,” Wilson said. “I’d rather them have a paid job that gives them experience than an internship that doesn’t give them pay and get experience.”

The forest and rangeland stewardship department offers three majors: natural resource management, forestry and rangeland ecology.

There are 236 natural resource management majors. Last year, 80 percent of graduates secured jobs six months after graduation, 14 percent pursued more education.

“Our largest employer is the U.S. Forest Service,” Nagel said. “So, there’s a wide variety of job types that those students get given the three degree programs that we have.”

In 2013 to 2014, 80 percent of students with a forestry degree secured jobs six months after graduation.

There are three rangeland ecology concentrations: range and forest management, restoration ecology, and rangeland and conservation management.

Last year, 80 percent of rangeland graduates secured plans six months after graduation, with 60 percent employed.

“If you look at the numbers, they certainly suggest that our students are, in most cases, getting jobs that they are interested in,” Nagel said.

She believes students who join clubs within the department have a higher chance at receiving job offers.

“We have quite a number of student clubs that are really active,” Nagel said. “Those students perform really well, and when students show leadership in those organizations, that really seems to help with job placement rates.”

The Ecosystem Science and Sustainability Department offers two majors: watershed science and ecosystem science and sustainability. There are 220 ecosystem science and sustainability majors and 59 majors within watershed science.

In the 2013 and 2014 survey, 100 percent of the CSU watershed science graduates were offered jobs six months after college.

In the Geosciences Department, students can study environmental geology, geology, geophysics or hydrogeology.

In the 2013-2014 survey, 20 percent of geology undergraduates said they went on to pursue higher education.

“Our recent statistics show that over 90 percent of our graduates have gotten jobs in the geosciences, and at fairly high salaries too. Over $52,000 average, although many go considerably higher than that,” said Rick Aster, professor and Geology Department head.

There are several clubs students can join, and there are even opportunities to land internships. An internship is not required for graduation, but it is encouraged.

“We have strong associations with partners that provide internship opportunities, usually during the summer, some of which are quite high paying,” Aster said. He said the department is always providing students with opportunities to prepare for a successful career.

The department was called Natural Resource Recreation and Tourism until 2000, when the department changed its name. Now, students in the department can major in natural resource and recreation tourism or human dimensions of natural resources.

There are 91 undergraduate students in this year’s new Human Dimensions of Natural Resources major, while there are 217 students in the Natural Resource Recreation and Tourism major.

Students requested the name change so it would be more applicable in today’s natural resource job force. In 2013-2014 survey, 95 percent of students with the natural resource recreation and tourism degree said they were offered jobs six months after college.

Students in the new major will seek similar jobs, but now the degree adapts to the changes in problems natural resource managers face today.

This article was published in The Collegian December 9, 2015.

350 Club hosts Fossil Free Film Festival

Over the next two weeks, Colorado State University’s 350 Club will be hosting the Fossil Free Film Festival to help raise awareness about climate change and to promote sustainability on campus.

The 350 Club is a new student organization, but there are various 350 chapters all over the nation.

President Sophie McVicker, a junior studying natural resource recreation and tourism, founded CSU’s branch of the 350 club. She became interested after attending a Fort Collins 350 meeting and decided the University needed its own club.

“One of our main goals as an organization is divestment. Most people know what investing is, divesting is the opposite,” McVicker said. “350’s goal is often to try to get institutions to divest, so we’re trying to get them to pull their money out of fossil fuels.”

The club is always looking for new members to come together and support environmental issues. McVicker said they will focus on climate change activism.

“Living in Colorado, most people here care about the environment,” McVicker said. “So, just giving people a centralized mission and place to come together is our goal.”

The film festival will be the first event that the club hosts, but McVicker thinks it is a good step towards convincing CSU to divest in energy other than fossil fuels.

“We put so much effort into this event that I am confident it will draw more people in,” McVicker said.

Film festival schedule

Climate Change: The Looming Crisis

Tuesday, Dec. 1 in Behavioral Sciences Building room A101 at 7 p.m.

This event will feature three guest speakers, followed by the film Chasing Ice. Scott Denning, from CSU’s Department of Atmospheric Science, and two State Senators John Kefalas and Matt Jones will deliver speeches.

Global Connections

Thursday, Dec. 3 in Behavioral Sciences Building room A101 at 7 p.m.

Two films will be shown, Unearthed and Climate Refugees, accompanied by two guest speakers Michele Betsill, CSU climate politics professor, and Razz Gormley

Global Connections

Saturday, Dec. 5 in Behavioral Sciences Building room A101 at 2 p.m.

Part two of Global Connections will feature the film This Changes Everything.

Frack Attack

Monday, Dec. 7 at Avogadro’s Number at 7 p.m.

Next week will kick off with two local speakers, Sam Schabacker from the Food and Water Watch and Fort Collins City Council member Ross Cunniff. The night will also include two documentaries about fracking, Dear Governor Hickenlooper and Groundswell Rising.

This Land Was Your Land

Wednesday, Dec. 9 in Behavioral Sciences Building room A101 at 2 p.m.

This event will be hosted by the CSU Sustainability Center and will include a musical performance by Elizabeth Hudetz, keynote speaker Stacia Ryder and two films. First they will air Last Rush For the Wild West, followed by Split Estate.

Vision For a Fossil Free Future

Saturday, Dec. 12 in Behavioral Sciences Building room A101 at 2 p.m.

The final night of the Fossil Free Film Festival will consist of three guest speakers and two films. Chuck Kutscher, from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, followed by Fort Collins State Rep. Jeni Arndt and State Rep. Max Tyler, who is also Chair of the House Transportation and Energy Committee.

This article was published in The Collegian December 1, 2015.

Looking for other fun things to do in Fort Collins? Check out Groupon’s new page made just for us Rams!

CSU agricultural students educate campus community on nutrition

The process food goes through before it arrives at the grocery store is crucial for consumers to understand if they would like to lead a healthy lifestyle, according to members of Assistant Professor Michael Martin’s AGED 330 class.

The AGED 330 class teamed up with other agricultural clubs at CSU to voice nutrition from a farmer's standpoint. (Photo by Veronica Baas)

The AGED 330 class teamed up with other agricultural clubs at CSU to voice nutrition from a farmer’s standpoint. (Photo credit: Veronica Baas)

The class hosted an event Tuesday on the Lory Student Center plaza to educate the Colorado State University community on the production of food. AGED students and members of agricultural clubs came together to answer any questions that people passing may have relating food.

Brett Arnusch, a sophomore agricultural education major and a member of the AGED 330 class, helped organize the event.

“We just wanted to be the administrators that brought all of the ag groups together,” Arnusch said. “If we group as many clubs and as many agricultural groups as we can together, we can actually have a very large voice.”

The class voted on several ideas mid-semester to educate their peers on the food they eat. Since then, the class has worked to bring all the different agricultural clubs together.

“This was a class-driven project,” Martin said. “We had thrown on the board some ideas that we wanted to do related to this. They had this idea and we took a vote, and this was the class idea that won.”

Initially, the class planned on having Cam the Ram with them on the plaza to help attract students.

“It turned out to be smaller due to weather, but we just wanted to show the non-ag students at CSU what’s actually going on in agriculture,” Martin said.

The idea of the project was to look at food production from a new angle: Rather than asking yourself how certain foods ended up on your table, think about how they were produced and in term where they are being shipped from.

“A lot of people talk about farm to table, right now we’re taking the approach of table to farm,” Martin said. “We think it’s an interesting way to have a discussion with people who may not know a lot about production ag, but know a lot about food.”


Members of the Agronomy Club (left) and the CSU Collegiate Farm Bureau Chapter (right) teamed up on the plaza to answer questions about food production. (Photo credit: Veronica Baas)

Several groups ran booths on the plaza to reach out to students. Representatives from the CSU Collegiate Farm Bureau Chapter, Alpha Gamma Rho, Ag Ed Alliance and the CSU Agronomy Club came together to provide nutritional education.

Macy Child, a junior studying soil and crop sciences, represented Ag Ed Alliance as she answered student questions about hormones, pesticides and anything else regarding food.

“We’re here to inform the students and anyone on campus about where their food comes from,” Child said. “It’s a little more in-depth and kind of a backwards twist on what people think is in their food and what actually is.”

This article was published in The Collegian November 17, 2015.

Students may take online survey on reconstruction of bridge connecting LSC to engineering

Some students may have noticed the rust accumulating under the bridge that connects the Lory Student Center to the Engineering building. Or maybe, after a rainy night, they have been walking to class and gotten dripped on.

This bridge connects the newly remodeled Lory Student Center to the Engineering building. For a class project, a team of engineering students are designing plans to reconstruct it.

This bridge connects the newly remodeled Lory Student Center to the Engineering building. For a class project, a team of engineering students will design a plan to reconstruct it. (Photo by Veronica Baas)

As members of a senior civil engineering design class at Colorado State University, Jerome Brunelle and his team are designing a plan to reconstruct the 37-year-old bridge.

“There are a lot of parts where it leaks, it’s broken and rusted out in a lot of spots, and a lot of people just don’t think it goes with the design of the new LSC structure,” Brunelle said.

The proposal includes a student fee increase to fund the project. It has not been submitted for review or considered for approval yet. To share your opinion with the designers, take the online survey.

Senior engineering majors Tanner Waldron, Samantha Katz, Ian Swensson, Matthew MacDonnell, Amanda Higley and Jerome Brunelle are all working on the Lory Student Center Engineering Building Connection project proposal.

Chris Thornton, an associate professor at CSU, teaches the course and it takes a full year to complete. The first semester student teams build proposals, and the second semester they create and finalize designs that they hope the University will consider.

“We will pick a few different alternatives next semester, a few different designs, and then pick a final one to go further with,” Brunelle said. “We decide on that with Mike Ellis.”

Brunelle will be focusing on the aesthetics of the bridge and the bridge canopy. To gather student input, Waldron designed a survey for the CSU community. It will be used in reference as to how often students and faculty use the connection and what designs they would like to see.

“It’s interesting to see what people want and what they wouldn’t want because there’s not a lot of times when student input is taken into consideration with projects on campus,” Katz said. “I feel like that gives us a little bit of an edge on our project.”

Waldron will design the bridge. He hopes to work in design at a structural engineering company when he graduates. For him, the project is great practice.

“All civils have to take this class and it definitely helps you gear towards your future as an engineer,” Waldron said.

This article was published in The Collegian November 17, 2015.

Join Cam the Ram on the Plaza for nutritional education

Cam the Ram will be on the Lory Student Center Plaza Tuesday to help teach students about nutrition. Students will be on campus from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. answering any questions students may have regarding food.

Cam’s Ag Experience will be hosted by Colorado State University’s program design and evaluation in agricultural literacy class, AGED 330. AGED 330 is taught by assistant professor Michael Martin. Danielle Wesolowski, a senior agricultural business major and a member of the class, helped organize the event.

“The goal is to show everyone where food comes from and to answer questions, like, ‘What’s in sausage?’” Wesolowski said. “And to answer concerns about gluten or high fructose corn syrup, and etc.”

Clubs from the College of Agricultural Sciences will be on the Plaza to help answer questions. To learn more about what goes into your body on a daily basis, stop by the Plaza Tuesday and visit with Cam.

This article was published in The Collegian November 16, 2015.

Rams Unplug: Journalism students promote sustainability on campus

Is your phone charger sitting at home plugged into the wall right now? Yeah, so is mine.

Forty percent of all electricity is used to power electronics that are off or not connected, according to statistics provided by the Rams Unplug campaign.

Five Colorado State University journalism students, Brian Waugh, Julia Adams, Pamela Shapiro, Erica Grasmick and Lucy Skrobacz, have come up with a plan to help CSU reduce its carbon footprint.

Rams Unplug is an awareness campaign designed to initiate better electricity conservation habits on campus.

“This campaign really focuses around unplugging,” Waugh said. “All of us kind of shared the compassion for sustainability and it seemed like something a lot of CSU students can relate to, especially with us being a green school.”

(Graphic by Julia Adams)

CSU set goals to become carbon neutral by 2050 through the Climate Action Plan — every carbon emission the University releases will be counteracted, recycled or reused somehow. Rams Unplug is one of the many steps the University is taking to achieve this.

Tom Milligan, vice president of external relations at CSU, guided the group of five students in a public relations workshop as they created the campaign.

“It’s thoughtful, it’s well designed and I think they’ve done great work here,” Milligan said. “It’ll give this group of students some professional level work they can be proud of, and to demonstrate that they have real skills.”

Electricity use accounts for the largest portion of CSU’s carbon footprint. By practicing sustainable habits, a large amount of electronic waste can be controlled. The campaign is encouraging students to limit electronic waste at CSU and practice unplugging cords when they are not in use.

“We’re trying to focus in on those first-year students so that they can hopefully build those habits and take them, whether they live on campus next year or off campus,” Skrobacz said.

Waugh said he has learned a lot about electricity use that he never would have known before the project.

“We’re not the experts on this topic by any means,” Waugh said. “We just found something that we want to promote, that would be good for CSU.”

This article was published in The Collegian November 10, 2015.

University breaks ground on ‘gateway to discovery’: New biology and chemistry research buildings

At a groundbreaking event for the new biology and chemistry research buildings, Colorado State University celebrated the construction of what will be known as the gateway to discovery, according to Dean of the College of Natural Sciences Jan Nerger.


President Tony Frank speaks at the ground-breaking ceremony for the new biology and chemistry buildings. (Photo credit: Veronica Baas)

The new buildings will be located south of Pitkin Street next to the Anatomy-Zoology building, serving as an entrance to the new Science Mall.

President Tony Frank addressed students, staff and other community members to celebrate these two projects. Frank said the new buildings are like blank pages in the story of CSU.

“(As) long as we stay focused on the mission of discovering new knowledge, passing that to the next generation and applying it for the benefit of the society we exist to serve, whatever happens in those buildings, whatever is written on the pages of that next chapter, will be something we can be proud of,” Frank said in his speech.

The Biology Building will cost $70 million. It was partially funded through bonds, but $57 million came from a student facilities fee.

Kathryn Tracy and Jesus Tapia, chemistry graduate students, treat themselves to cookies decorated with a picture of the new Chemistry Research Building.

Kathryn Tracy and Jesus Tapia, chemistry graduate students, treat themselves to cookies decorated with a picture of the new Chemistry Research Building. (Photo credit: Veronica Baas)

The building will feature enhanced classrooms and state-of-the-art research labs. There will also be a lecture hall and an advising center. It will occupy 151,560 sq. ft. and will be ready for student use in August 2017.

Tracey Abel, facilities management project manager for the biology building, said she is excited to break ground.

“This building is going to accommodate the students, where the existing Anatomy-Zoology is just packed,” Abel said. “The students aren’t able to do all of the things that could be done in science and learning.”

The Chemistry Research Building is being funded by the State of Colorado. It is a multi-phase funded project scheduled for completion August 2017. The new research facility will be 60,000 sq. ft., located next to the new Biology Building.

Megan Neufeld, a graduate chemistry student, said she is happy to see the University expand its resources for scientific purposes.

“I think it’s going to be really cool,” Neufeld said. “It will be nice to be able to have resources that aren’t currently available to us in the building that we are in right now.”


ASCSU President Jason Sydoriak and University Facility Fee Advisory Board Chair Sam Laffey address students, faculty and other members of the community at the ground-breaking event Thursday. (Photo credit: Veronica Baas)

Sam Laffey, chair of the University Facility Fee Advisory Board, and Jason Sydoriak, president of the Associated Students of Colorado State University, spoke at the event, representing the student body.

Sydoriak said the new buildings will give the community a tangible idea of what the University believes CSU should look like in the future.

“I think it’s exciting because it’s one more installment that’s a part of the trajectory that the University has taken for the vision of the future,” Sydoriak said. “And I think they’re going in the right direction.”

This article was published in The Collegian October 16, 2015.

Student by day, rapper by night: Emprovyze records out of Corbett Hall

For most students, living in a dorm can be loud and space limiting. Sophomore Josh Weemes manages to fit a small recording studio into his.

Weemes started rapping last year when he lived in Durward Hall. Now he is a RA in Corbett Hall where he still records music.

His fans know him as Emprovyze, and for now his tracks can be found on Soundcloud.

“I want to record a four or five song EP by the end of this upcoming summer,” Weemes said. “That’s my goal, I hope to be on iTunes and Spotify by then.”

The newest Emprovyze track, “Oceans,” was recorded out of Corbett. Two of his other songs, “Dude…Where’s my ship?” and “The End,” were recorded in Durward.

“I have a condenser microphone, and I have like a sound proofing foam that I’ve built around it so it blocks outside noise,” Weemes said. “Then I have studio monitors, monitors are a fancy word for speakers, and I work with Logic ProX.”

Weemes pays for his education on his own, as well as the finances involved with making music. He has to buy the beats he raps to, purchase the equipment he records on and in the future he wants to get some real studio time.

“I’m a 20 year old, single dude I can take all the financial risks I need to right now,” Weemes said. “And whether or not Emprovyze blows up, I want to be able tell people that I had a dream and I went for it, regardless of what happens.”

It was only about five months ago when Weemes started recording his music. After his friends recognized his passion for the written word, they convinced him to try rapping to a beat. It came naturally and he has been hooked since.

“I love doing it,” Weemes said. “It gets me up in the morning and keeps me up a little too late at night.”

Josh Weemes, also known as Emprovyze, reviews a recording in his studio he built in Corbett Hall.

Josh Weemes, also known as Emprovyze, reviews a recording in his studio he built in Corbett Hall. (Photo credit: Veronica Baas)

When he began, he was a freshman studying journalism, living on campus and recording when he could. Zach Hussey, Weemes’ floormate at the time, said he could hear him rapping last year when they lived on the same hall.

“I could hear him recording for sure,” Hussey said. “I couldn’t exactly hear what he was saying, but I could hear a beat and hear him rapping pretty fast.”

Since then, his fan base has grown to more than just friends. He said ten percent of his plays on Soundcloud are international, and he receives fan mail and comments from people all over the world.

“I’m definitely branching out to a much broader audience, trying to break away from my friends,” Weemes said. “But your friends can start a lot too. It’s all a snowball effect.”

Currently Weemes is in the process of talking to booking agents to arrange some smaller scale shows. He hopes this will help expand his fan base and spread the music.

Freshman Josh Dorsch went to high school with Weemes before he became Emprovyze. They have grown closer since coming to CSU, and Dorsch thinks he has a good chance of blowing up.

“I’ve heard him freestyle and this kid has an act for this — he has some serious talent,” Dorsch said

Emprovyze wants his listeners to know that he cares about what his lyrics mean, and how his audience perceives them. He thinks it is important to have a purpose and a message. For example, he raps “If music is lust than my lyrics are love” in his newest song “Oceans.”

Weemes does not fit in to the average rapper stereotype, so gaining respect from his listeners has been hard. So far it seems to be working out. His new song released less than a month ago already has 400 plays on YouTube and almost 1,000 on Soundcloud.

“Josh talks a lot about how this is a huge dream for him and how he wants everyone to be able to live their dreams,” Hussey said. “I think that‘s one of the reasons he’s sticking to this, because he believes everyone should go through with what they really want to do in life.”

This article was published in The Collegian October 14, 2015.