Issue 393: 9 / 27 / 2011

"Conversation Peace" Tackles Social Issues

"Conversation Peace" panelists are (L ...

"Conversation Peace" panelists are (L to R) Toya Pryor, Sharon Coleman, Elizabeth Shelley, Joanitha Barnes, and Rebecca Terrell.

“Conversation Peace,” a discussion forum under the auspices of the Honors Academy, drew a full house to hear a panel of experts talk about and offer ways to mitigate domestic violence and other gender-related issues. The forum, featuring panelists Joanitha Barnes, instructor, Criminal Justice – Southwest ; Sharon Coleman, director – Wrags to Ritches; Toya Pryor, officer – Police Services/Public Safety – Southwest; Elizabeth Shelley, WYCA Women’s Shelter/ Immigration Program Services; and Rebecca Terrell, Memphis Center for Reproductive Health, was held on Southwest’s Union Avenue Campus on September 13.

MaLinda Wade, developer of the forum and associate director of the Honors Academy, welcomed the group and introduced the panelists. In her opening remarks, Wade said, “A lot of people don’t know what domestic violence really is. A lot of people don’t realize the issues we have with teenage pregnancy and the correlation with crime and HIV.” Those issues were discussed during the forum.

Officer Pryor began by passing out Southwest emergency information booklets. She encouraged students to use the college-wide red emergency phones to ask for help or report an incident rather than handle a physical altercation themselves and risk harm or arrest.

Shelley explained domestic abuse, victims’ rights, and services that the YWCA provides. She said domestic violence stems from a control factor – one partner fighting to exert control over the other partner. Shelly informed the participants that the agency has two new services: The Family Safety Center, a one-stop-shop for victims of domestic violence; and the Blueprint for Safety Grant, an integrated program linking criminal justice agencies together to provide intervention for domestic abuse victims.

Terrell focused on women’s rights to make their own decision about their sexual and reproductive health. Barnes detailed statistical data on HIV stating “Black women between ages 18-34 have the highest incidences of HIV.” Coleman shared the true story that inspired her to write the play Wrags to Ritches. She said, “It is a story that has very little to do with money, but a lot to do with success in overcoming domestic violence, drug abuse, alcohol abuse, sexual abuse and molestation.”

View more photos of the "Conversation Peace" forum.

Southwest’s Homeland Security Program Hosts a “Criminal Activity” Symposium

Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell, City of Memphis Mayor AC Wharton, officials from Tennessee Homeland Security, as well as federal, state, and local officials are slated to speak and participate in the symposium “Criminal Activity: Its Impact on National Security” on September 28 at Southwest Tennessee Community College, between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on the Macon Cove Campus, Farris Building, Room AB. Among other scheduled participants are U. S. District Attorney Ed Stanton, Shelby County District Attorney Amy Weirich and Bob Nations - Memphis, director for Shelby County EMA/Homeland Security.

Attendance is expected from both students and professors from the University of Memphis and University of Mississippi. Students from the Criminal Justice Department at Southwest and  students in the Homeland Security Grant Program from multiple academic disciplines will also participate.

The symposium is a combined effort of the Homeland Security Grant Program, Criminal Justice Department, Department of Police Services/Public Safety and Special Academic Programs at Southwest. The Homeland Security Grant Program provides Southwest students with an opportunity to explore academic and career paths through field trips to local homeland security organizations and colleges, seminars and mentoring.

For more information, contact Program Coordinator Donald Drewry at 901-333-4047 or e-mail at

This material is based on material supported by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security under Award Number 2009-ST-062-000032.

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Southwest Engineering Major is Awarded the Coca-Cola Leaders of Promise Scholarship

Erin Mullinax

Erin Mullinax

One of the 2011 Coca-Cola Leaders of Promise Scholars, Erin Mullinax, is attending Southwest Tennessee Community College seeking an Associate of Science in Engineering. She is a member of Phi Theta Kappa Upsilon Delta and the 2011-2012 President of the Honors Academy. Following her graduation in May 2012, she will be pursuing a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering. She is currently reviewing admissions offers to several schools with strong engineering programs. After reviewing the scholarships available to Phi Theta Kappa members, she chose to apply for the Leaders of Promise scholarship because it is one of the first scholarships provided to students to be used while they are enrolled in community college. The scholarship is designed to help defray the financial costs of attending school while encouraging student participation in Phi Theta Kappa programs and cultivating leadership ability.

The requirements for earning this scholarship are as follows:

The application process required Mullinax to compose three essays describing her leadership abilities and addressing the current Phi Theta Kappa Honors Study Topic - The Democratization of Information: Power, Peril and Promise. She also submitted a letter of recommendation from Douglas Branch, director of the Honors Academy at Southwest. To receive the second installment of her scholarship, she will have to continue to uphold the hallmarks of Phi Theta Kappa (Scholarship, Leadership, Service and Fellowship).

"This scholarship means a lot to me. I am honored to have been chosen as one of the recipients and encourage other students to apply for the 2012 Coca-Cola Leaders of Promise Scholarship," said Mullinax.

Written by Erin Mullinax

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The Tennessee SBA at Southwest to Celebrate National Minority Enterprise Development

According to Executive Director for the Tennessee Small Development Center at Southwest David Doyle, the Tennessee Small Business Development Centers, Small Business Administration, and Minority Enterprise Development Corporation are celebrating the 2011 Minority Enterprise Development (MED) Week by hosting a variety of events. The national theme is for the occasion “Emerging Industries and Markets: A Blue Print for Success.” A weeklong series of workshops and seminars will include:

October 3, 2011 - Holiday Inn University of Memphis, 3700 Central Avenue

October 4, 2011 - Renaissance Center, 555 Beale Street

October 5, 2011 - Renaissance Center, 555 Beale Street

October 6, 2011

October 7, 2011 - Holiday Inn , University of Memphis, 3700 Central Avenue

For additional information, contact David Doyle @

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Get Free Flu Vaccinations at Employee Benefits Fair

Caremark will be offering “FREE” Flu and Pneumonia vaccinations at this year’s annual Benefits Fair. In order to receive your “FREE” vaccination(s), please contact Meridith Miller-Rucker at or by phone at  (901) 333-5316 to reserve your spot at either location listed below by September 30.

October 13
Macon Cove Campus
10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Farris Building, Rooms A, B, and C

October 14
Union Avenue Campus
10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Parrish Building, Room B-106

Please specify which campus you would like to receive your vaccination and if you are requesting one or both vaccinations. You MUST email or call to reserve your spot by September 30, and also bring your Caremark prescription card the day of the Benefits Fair in order to receive the “FREE” vaccination(s). If you have lost or misplaced your Caremark prescription card, please contact them at  1 (877) 522-8679 for a replacement.

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Beat the Flu Bug

Submitted by
Tim Tyler, Public Safety Specialist

Influenza Symptoms - Influenza (commonly called the “flu”) is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. The information below describes common flu symptoms, how to protect yourself and those close to you from getting the flu, and what to do if you get sick with flu-like symptoms.

Be Aware of Common Flu Symptoms
Influenza usually starts suddenly and may include the following symptoms:

Having these symptoms does not always mean that you have the flu. Many different illnesses, including the common cold, can have similar symptoms.

Diagnosing the Flu - It is very difficult to distinguish the flu from other infections on the basis of symptoms alone. A doctor’s exam may be needed to tell whether you have developed the flu or a complication of the flu. There are tests that can determine if you have the flu as long you are tested within the first two or three days of illness.

If you develop flu-like symptoms and are concerned about your illness, especially if are at high risk for complications of the flu, you should consult your healthcare provider. Those at high risk for complications include people 65 years or older, people with chronic medical conditions (such as asthma, diabetes, or heart disease), pregnant women, and young children.

Know the Risks from the Flu - In some people, the flu can cause serious complications, including bacterial pneumonia, dehydration, and worsening of chronic medical conditions, such as congestive heart failure, asthma or diabetes. Children and adults may develop sinus problems and ear infections.

People May Have Different Reactions to the Flu -The flu can cause mild to severe illness and at times can lead to death. Although most healthy people recover from the flu without complications, some people, such as older people, young children, and people with certain health conditions (such as asthma, diabetes, or heart disease), are at high risk for serious complications from the flu.

Know How the Flu Spreads -The flu usually spreads from person to person in respiratory droplets when people who are infected cough or sneeze. People occasionally may become infected by touching something with influenza virus on it and then touching their mouth, nose or eyes.

Healthy adults may be able to infect others one day before getting symptoms and up to five days after getting sick. Therefore, it is possible to give someone the flu before you know you are sick as well as while you are sick.

Best Protection against the Flu: Vaccination - The single best way to protect yourself and others against influenza is to get a flu vaccination each year. Two kinds of flu vaccine are available in the United States:

The “flu shot” — an inactivated vaccine (containing killed virus) that is given with a needle, usually in the arm. The flu shot is approved for use in people older than 6 months, including healthy people and people with chronic medical conditions (such as asthma, diabetes, or heart disease).

The nasal-spray flu vaccinea vaccine made with live, weakened flu viruses that do not cause the flu (sometimes called LAIV for “live attenuated influenza vaccine” or FluMist®). LAIV (FluMist®) is approved for use in healthy* people two-49 years of age who are not pregnant.

Yearly flu vaccinations should begin in September or as soon as vaccine is available and continue throughout the influenza season, into December, January, and beyond. This is because the timing and duration of influenza seasons vary. While influenza outbreaks can happen as early as October, most of the time influenza activity peaks in January or later.

Reprinted from TN.GOV - Department of Health
Content provided by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

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Mini Jazz Festival/Poetry Reading

Students, faculty and staff are invited to come out and enjoy an evening of original poetry and spoken-word performances at Southwest. Traditional poems will also be recited in a relaxing atmosphere on September 27 from 5 to 7 p.m. at Union Avenue Campus, B Building, Room 106 (Saluqi Den).

This event is sponsored by the Campus Activity Board and the Department of Student Activities and Multicultural Affairs

Note: Southwest identification (ID) cards are required to participate in this event.

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For Proper Fit and Finish, Check Body Shops with Care

Reprinted from a Special to The Commercial Appeal
By Randy Hutchinson
President of the BBB

“Parts do not fit properly. Paint job and body work is bad. Blisters in the paint. Owner forged my name on a check from the insurance company.”

This consumer paid $4,200 for what she claimed was shoddy repair work by a body shop. We don’t know what the shop’s side of the story is because they didn’t respond when we sent the complaint to them. The company has an F rating with the BBB.

There were over 5 million vehicle crashes in 2009 according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Most of the vehicles involved ended up at a body shop or collision center where the average repair bill was $2,400. Most were covered by insurance.

If you’re involved in a collision and file a claim, your insurance company may have a list of recommended body shops with which they have special arrangements. The repair contract is generally between you and the body shop, however, so you need to do your own due diligence in choosing one.

The BBB offers the following advice for finding a reputable body shop:

Get everything in writing upfront, including the work to be performed and the cost. Obtain an itemized list for all parts and services, with prices, identifying any used or re-manufactured parts.

Ask about a warranty. Professional, reputable repair shops will stand behind their repair work by offering a warranty. Usually this warranty is for a specific time – from 30 days to lifetime – and covers the labor, materials used and installation. The actual parts will be covered by the manufacturer’s warranty.

The average repair job takes two weeks, so you may need a rental car. Ask if the shop can make recommendations for a rental car company and if they can make arrangements for a rental car to be ready when you drop off your car. Check your insurance policy to see if it includes rental car coverage. Keep in mind that a full-year of rental car coverage may be less than the cost of a one-day rental car if you have to pay out of pocket.

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