Picture two young boys meeting up one morning for what one can only imagine will be a fun-filled day of adventure and possibilities. Can you hear their conversation? Did it sound something like this?
Boy #1: “Wanna Hurts Donut?”
Boy #2: “Sure! What’s a Hurts Donut?”
This is the point at which Boy #1 proceeds to punch Boy #2 in the arm with all his might with a bravado-filled chant of, “hurts, don’t it?”
For many years, this childhood prank may have been what came to mind with the mention of the words Hurts Donuts, but Tim and Kas Cleg, owners of Hurts Donut Company, along with their business partner Scott Bussard, may have changed that.
The trio opened their first Hurts Donut Company shop in November 2013 in Springfield, Mo and offers a unique spin on the traditional doughnut. According to News Leader, the company does absolutely no advertising, opting to rely solely on word-of-mouth and social media. Only recently, has the company begun the process of launching a website, which as of now says “website coming soon” and offers links to individual franchise Facebook pages.
Watch the video below to lean more about the Norman location’s doughnut varieties.
Hurts Donut Company locations can now be found in ten different states, with more new franchises expected by the end of this year.
While at a recent workshop in Norman, I had the pleasure of indulging in a one of a kind donut experience at the local Hurts Donut Company.
Even though I consider myself somewhat of a donut enthusiast, there was no way I could try all of the 70 handmade varieties they sell. Don’t get me wrong, I wanted to, but instead, I relied on the cashier/decorator Zowie Comfort to select a few of their top-selling donuts for me to try.
Customer favorites include the Cookie Monster, inspired by the Sesame Street character. Covered in smooth, sweet blue-tinted icing, with googling, candy eyes and Oreo cookie crumbs flowing over the side, the Cookie Monster will surely bring out the inner child in the more mature connoisseur.
Another favorite, the Jesus confection is a cake donut and includes a cloud of powdered sugar icing with a touch of pure cinnamon that brings out a Mexican flair in every bite.
The Homer, named for Homer Simpson, the dad on the Simpsons television show is a light, fluffy, yeast donut with unflavored, pink-tinted icing and multi-colored sprinkles. The sprinkles bring in the happy-go-lucky, party guy personality of Homer to the concoction.
And, the Blueberry Crumble, oozing with fresh blueberries from a cake donut covered in mounds of crumbling, buttery streusel presents the utmost of indulgences for any donut lover.
After my experience, I know where to go when I can’t get over a craving for a handmade, gourmet donut that is out of this world–Hurts Donut Company.
Getting involved on campus and feeling a sense of belonging are common goals of college freshmen.
The University of Oklahoma Baptist Student Collegiate Ministry (BCM) is a group that offers a way for students to discover these things and find friends along the way.
Catie Gray is a BCM staff member and OU graduate. She is glad to wear various hats as many staff members do. She can be found serving lemonade, planning an event or showing a student around campus depending on the day. Catie said, “The BCM is primarily about making God known and fostering a love for him amongst each other.”
They’re able to show this love through ministries such as Paradigm, Villages, Freshman Challenge, International Village, Ownership and Discipleship. These activities vary from large group worship to small group lunches and one-on-one discipleship. Events are also planned throughout the year across campus.
At an event Thursday evening, June 22, BCM, along with other student organizations, greeted Camp Crimson at Walker Tower to pass out refreshments, t-shirts and help students learn more about the campus and organizations. Many seeds were planted at the event.
Outreach of the BCM extends far beyond the boundaries of the campus and even Norman. Catie said, “OU sends the most International Mission Board missionaries of any public university. We have 23 students overseas currently. They are in four different countries.” Each year, students travel to as many as six different countries to serve as missionaries.
The BCM shares building space at 1320 W. Lindsay, but is raising funds to build a new facility across from the dorms. For more information about the BCM, events or programs. Visit their website at www.oubcm.org.
Students learn to be journalists by doing journalism, so as the media world evolves with technology, it might make sense to most people that the student journalism lab evolve as well.
Unless those people are school administrators.
In many cases, the need to protect and guard against potentially disastrous situations vary greatly from state to state, and even district to district. Many advisers have fought to get restrictions lifted so their students can use social media the way professional media outlets do.
In Tempe, Arizona, Kris Urban, who has advised publications for 20 years, says that most platforms are blocked on student computers and that his administration clearly does not want students using social media, although social media is part of their CTE standards.
“I’ve argued that it’s difficult to teach social media when students can’t access it, but it seems to fall on deaf ears,” Urban said in response to a survey posted to the JEA (Journalism Educators Association) listerv. “Therefore, students either use my computer or their phones when necessary.”
Having to work around restrictions is common. Darla Tresner of Bartlesville, Oklahoma, said everything is blocked at her school, but the students use their phones.
“It’s one of those situations where we do it, and we didn’t ask permission,” she said of students reporting through social media. Her administration is aware that the student journalists have established Facebook and Twitter accounts for Media Prime, the hub for their student newspaper and magazines; however, those platforms remain blocked on student computers.
Tresner said her students have benefited by learning to use social media in their journalistic pursuits, and the school has benefited as well. In the fall of 2015, a couple of students split duties, with one covering the football games, while another covered crowd reaction. This past fall, student journalists attended presidential candidate rallies and were able to post photos and reports to Facebook. An ambitious news reporter even covered breaking news from a school board meeting when she found out a contractor had incorrectly measured for tennis courts, which were a foot too short. Stepping out into the hallway, the reporter used Facebook Live.
“She got the word out real quick,” Tresner said.
Administrator fears are not unfounded. At Canton High School, not only are all social media platforms blocked by the district’s IT director, but so is cell phone usage. Adviser Meredith Barney said that even teachers have to go to the parking lot to use their cell phones.
“The principal came from a district where there was a lawsuit over Snapchat,” Barney said, explaining that the issue involved several students and was sexually explicit. She has hope, however, in the fact that the district is getting Chromebooks, which she thinks of as “training wheels”. She thinks she’s convinced administration to incorporate a digital citizenship class, which she hopes will lead to lifting of the restrictions. She would like to see students taught to use social media as a tool instead of a weapon.
Districts’ fears are not unfounded. Stories abound of students using poor judgment on social media; however, many advisers argue that teaching students to use the tools effectively, as well as the results of irresponsible use, is better in the long run than blocking them and limiting their learning.
The Essexville, Michigan, district lifted restrictions and embraced social media in recent years, with students using Chromebooks in a 1:1 program. Adviser Dawn Bromberg said the district has its own accounts with the principal running Facebook and Twitter. That positive outlook didn’t protect them, however, from irresponsible behavior, and Bromberg says administration is still wary.
“Earlier this year a student was given the choice to withdraw or be expelled after he made a fake Facebook page for a teacher,” Bromberg said. The student used his cell phone to take photos of family photos she had in the classroom.
“He assumed her identity and said many salacious and defamatory things about her, her family, and other students. It was awful and demonstrates that students don’t always have the ability to make good decisions.”
Though wary, the administration remains open to students learning to use social media. Many districts, however, have yet to lift restrictions or have restricted once open access due to malicious behavior.
For advisers who wish to go to bat for their students, San Jose, California’s Ellen Austin suggests preparing to go to administrators with a plan. When she arrived at her current school in 2013, there was no open access to social media.
“I submitted a proposal to admin and to [the] marketing department with justifications and with a developed social media policy, which we would follow,” she said. “The admin approved our policy and we have been online ever since.”
Decreasing funds, large class sizes and low wages made it difficult for teachers to stay in Oklahoma despite efforts from the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education and other sources.
by Kerry Friesen & Casey Wilson
Putting the last of her belongings in the box, teacher Kaysi Sheehan walked out of room 404 for the last time. As she rolled the keys off the ring, it was done. She was leaving Norman High, and would soon be leaving the state of Oklahoma for a job a few hours south in Lewisville, Texas.
“Packing up my classroom was heartbreaking. I loved Norman High and everyone in it,” Kaysi said. “I honestly thought I was going to spend my entire teaching career at NHS and retire in that classroom.”
Leaving Norman High was a difficult decision as Kaysi had many friends and memories at there.
“I am going to miss my teacher family the most. We were far more than colleagues, we leaned on each other for everything,” Kaysi said. “I met my husband at Norman High, got engaged in the library, and had my first baby while working at NHS.”
Kaysi and her husband Shawn were by no means the only teachers to leave Oklahoma to head for greener pastures, but, as the 15-16 Oklahoma State Teacher of the Year, Shawn’s story made for more publicity. In March of 2017, Shawn published a blog questioning what he and his family should do with their future. Ultimately, the pair decided to move to Texas.
“Deciding to move to Texas was hard,” Kaysi said. “Post November election, and as the state legislature was making no progress in funding education, it became clear that I needed an exit strategy.”
Even though the pair struggled with the decision, Kaysi is excited for a new challenges and opportunities.
“I will go from 170+ students a semester to 75 or less per semester. I will also have an extra 30 minutes of grading/prep every day. So that’s less papers to grade and more time to do it. This extra time will allow me to really reflect on my teaching and spend more time prepping and preparing more innovative lessons” Kaysi said.
In addition to the extra time and fewer students, financial security was a major draw for the Sheehans.
“I will be able to teach and not be worrying in the back of my mind how we are going to make ends meet that month,” Kaysi said.
The Sheehans’ story is becoming common across the state of Oklahoma as funding continues to lag behind other states and as the possibility of a pay raise remains a pipe dream.
Even though improvements haven’t come, the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education at the University of Oklahoma is trying to encourage new teachers to stay.
Dr. Gregg Garn, dean of the college of education, has been working to implement new policies to encourage new teachers to stay in Oklahoma and balance the lower pay.
According to Dr. Lawrence Baines, associate dean for Research and Graduate Studies, Dean Garn worked to amass an endowment to help make it cheaper to come to OU for a degree in education. According to Baines, Garn has also been working with the Chamber of Commerce, realtors and banks to help secure low-interest home loans.
Garn plans to work with Homes for Heroes to decrease the amount of money a teacher would need to have for a down payment on a house. Through the program, down payments would be less than $1,000.
The college has also started a reimbursement program for students taking the certification tests.
“For the three Oklahoma tests, it’s about $300, but for a college student $300 could be three months of food,” Baines said.
For Baines and Dr. Crag Hill, associate professor, the main job of the college is to prepare teachers to be the best they can, even if it means losing them to another state.
“We want to encourage them to stay in Oklahoma, but we know they’re going to do what they’re going to do,” Baines said.
Both Baines and Hill work to show what might be attractive in Oklahoma teaching. Hill is responsible for managing the intern class most semesters.
“In my experience as a teacher and working with teachers is that teachers stay that have autonomy and are expected to be creative and expected to be innovative, and that’s doable. That doesn’t cost money,” Hill said. “At some point, the best teachers are innovators. I love this shit because it’s creative. I mean, it’s an art.”
In addition to creativity, Hill believes going into teaching is an act of social justice and giving young teachers a voice will keep them in the profession, and, hopefully, Oklahoma.
“I want to make sure kids can read and write so they can speak back to power,” Hill said. That power might be other teachers, might be principals, might be their own parents. Or to politicians. Anyone who can make decisions over them.”
Despite the efforts, the numbers still trouble Baines and others in the college. When Baines interviewed the graduating class in May 2017, approximately forty percent were leaving for different states.
“Those [interns] who leave are often those with the most snap, some of the better teachers,” Baines said.
With many teachers leaving, the number of emergency certifications increase, a statistic that also worries Baines. Over the last two years, Oklahoma has seen more than 2,000 emergency certifications issued.
“These are teachers who’ve never had a class in education, they’ve never worked with children before and I’ve seen some of those who are a lot of times complete disasters. They can be especially harmful in the early grades.”
Though Baines is concerned about emergency certifications, Baines is more concerned with the overall trend.
“If they were a producer, emergency certification is the largest producer of teachers in the state by far, and the next is the big regional institutions,” Baines said. “If you look at the state as a whole and you look at the Title II website that tells you where all the graduates are, we have just a trickle of graduates from OU. It’s around 100.”
For Kaysi, though she is sad to leave Oklahoma, her love for education endures.
“I couldn’t imagine doing anything else,” Kaysi said. “I love being with young people and teaching, so it’s perfect for me.”
Students will see the end of construction and the implementation of new technology at Irving Middle School this school year.
“Construction is slated to be done for school to start in August,” Head Principal Jonathan Atchley said. “There will be six new classrooms, there is a new office, and a gym we will use for volleyball and, primarily, wrestling. The gym will also serve as our safe room – tornado shelter.”
Irving’s construction project started when Norman voters passed Bond Issue 2014. The bond allowed for the Norman Public Schools district to make repairs and expand on existing schools, like Irving.
“The really good news, our prefabs will be gone. So no one will have a classroom or even an office in one,” Atchley said. “The new structure will be beautiful. And, we will have new paint. The kids will see a more welcoming look.”
The PTO will also provide two shaded structures with square benches that offers seating all around. Atchley also said Irving will have new sidewalks.
Along with new construction from the Bond Issue 2014, NPS received money to implement the iTech Initiative. Starting the 2017-2018 school year, sixth to twelfth students will have individual MacBook Airs to use in and out of the classroom.
“Within the first few days of school, every student will have their MacBook,” Atchley said.
Much goes into students receiving their MacBook Air, including Digital Citizenship and basic set-up. Teachers will also have various uses for the MacBook Airs in their classroom. Several subjects, like Language Arts, have digital textbooks.
Teachers like Kerry Friesen, Norman High School, see the long term benefits of students utilizing MacBooks in the classroom.
“Students will have more real world skills leaving school,” Friesen said. “Especially with students receiving the Macs in middle school. There’s more opportunity for growth. Right now, kids are digital native. They’re born with technology. It surrounds them. But, they don’t know to use it use it. They can download apps and open Google. This will hopefully make them digital savvy.”
As Oklahoma searches for solutions to help fill the gaps in education funding, the Norman school district begins is entering the final phase of their most recent improvement bond. Norman voters have always been strong supporters of education and they affirmed their commitment when they passed the $126 million bond project in 2014. From this money, around $24 million was allotted specifically for improvements at Norman High School. With the completion of the construction process in sight, students, teachers, and administrators have the right to be excited for the coming year.
Principal Scott Beck expressed his enthusiasm for the new facilities in talking about the upcoming school year. “[Students] are going to walk into a school that feels like a brand new school…a place that is going to inspire the kind of learning experiences that are going to really challenge them and engage them.” Facility improvements go beyond the standard maintaining of facilities and create a variety of new learning opportunities for students. Improvements include:
New College and Career Center with a new school entry, offices and additional classrooms.
New Freshman Academy that will allow educators to provide specific instruction and resources in a collaborative environment for incoming freshman
Renovated Learning Commons that features a 21st century library that will feature a collaborative learning environment, independent study areas, a coffee bar and more
Renovated Video Resource Center that includes a green room, full-sized classrooms for media and video instruction, showcase area for Channel 18 control room
The process of implementing so many new spaces has come with its challenges for the school.
“In many ways it’s like renovating your kitchen while living in the house but times a thousand.” says Beck. Students have had to deal with limited access to areas of the school and the problem of navigating their ways to class through a construction zone. With school beginning back in less than two months, there is still a lot of work to do. Teachers will have limited time to settle into new areas and students will have the challenge of adjusting to new spaces. In time, as the construction crews pack up and leave, students and teachers will benefit from the new spaces and potential for learning in the coming years.
Front View of Norman High
Courtyard outside Norman High School
Construction on the front drive at Norman High School
The frightening, but true saga of the evolution of a scholastic journalism adviser.
By Darla Tresner
There once was a land of enchantment and joy for teenager Darla Jones. This was known as College High School in Bartlesville, Oklahoma. During the early to mid 1970s, Col-Hi, as it was known, was the crown jewel of education on the Oklahoma Prairie.
During this time, Darla became involved in the journalism department at College High led by a phenomenal adviser by the name of Edith Hicks. Edith Hicks, or “Edith” as she was known to her students privately, was one of the top scholastic media advisers in the nation. Mrs. Hicks seemed the epitome of the wise, coffee-chugging, chain-smoking female reporter of the 1940s and 1950s.
Under her tenure, the College High Nautilus won national championship after national championship among high school student newspapers. It became a source of great pride throughout the community; the students who served on her staffs were forever proud of their paper and their department.
While working for the Oklahoma Daily, Darla served as a reporter, copy editor, news editor, and then, in the spring of 1980, editor in chief of The Oklahoma Daily.
Darla claims it was the happiest time of her life. Under her, worked a staff of 45 students. The newspaper was a broadsheet which came out daily, Monday through Friday. Adviser to the Daily was Chuck House.
Accomplishments of the staff of 1980
Campaigned to repeal the boycott of the Olympics due to its detriment to career of OU student Bart Connor’s career.
Interviewed the Oklahoma Grand Wizard of the KKK. NAACP threatened to protest on campus.
Campaigned to acquire OU Trolley—first free on-campus transportation.
Daily editor makes national headlines by being pied in the face with a shaving cream pie ala Anita Bryant because editor would not publish list of alleged gay members of the public as purported by leader of recently formed GAA.
1980—Time to leave the safety of Copeland Hall
Time to return home to College High
Thirty-eight years later, this is what I have learned:
The joy is in the relationships….
Darla’s niece receives a new computer at Christmas from her parents and Auntie to encourage her to work toward medical school—not journalism.
Despite Auntie’s warnings, Darla’s nephew Toryn, who graduated Valedictorian in high school, and highest honors from the University of Arkansas with a degree in Environmental Science: Soil and Land Management, began a Masters program there only to suddenly change and transfer to Wichita State University to become a Media Specialist with the school’s athletic program.
Purpose: The purpose of the project is to build a Rube Goldberg machine as a class to accomplish a simple task. This year’s task was to light a candle. Each student in class is responsible for a section. Each section must interact with the section on either side i.e., section 1 must trigger section 2 and section 2 must trigger section 3, etc.
Apparatus: Simple machines are combined into an arrangement for each section to interact together to accomplish the task of lighting a candle.
There are six simple machines that combine to make complex machines:
Lever: A straight bar or board that pivots on a fulcrum to move a load when a force is applied.
Inclined plane: Any slanted surface that serves to move a load from a lower to higher surface.
Wheel and axle: A Wheel that turns around a center post.
Screw: An inclined plane that wraps around a center post.
Wedge: Two inclined planes together to create a shape that is very narrow at one end and wide at the other. Used to separate two objects or stop an object from moving.
Pulley: A wheel and a rope combined. The rope sits in a groove on the outside of the wheel. Used to lift things.
The first section of the Rube Goldberg contains the following simple machines:
2 inclined planes
The troubleshooting included adjusting the angle of the book and the distance between the dominoes.
Adjusting the pail to make sure the location of the pail allowed the domino to fall into the pail, and making sure that the pail moved with the weight of the domino.
Adjusting the string in the pulley to make sure that the string would move the lever when the string is moved by the mass of the bucket.
Finding the proper length of the flap/stopper to allow the marble to be released into the top of the screw once the lever moves the flap.
Alignment of the screw to allow the marble to drop onto the final inclined plane and fall through a whole and enter the next section.
Day 1 Brainstorming with Section to determine a design and get a rough sketch.
Day 2 Beginning to set up materials. Need 2 ring stands to hold book in stable position. Used cardboard to prevent book from falling off of ring stands. Cut hole in cardboard large enough for dominos to fall through to other side to land in pail.
Day 3 Adjusted position of pail to catch domino and start moving when the domino is added to the mass of the pail. Meanwhile, tweaking position(angle) of pulley and length of string.
Day 4 Adjusting length of flap on end of lever to release the marble or ball bearing. Also adjusting length of string based on the drop distance of the pail making sure that the flap will move enough to release the marble to fall onto the screw.
Day 5 Making sure that marble/ball bearing has enough mass to trigger section 2. Large marble (shooter) appears to have enough mass to trigger section 2. Threads on screw need to be reinforced to consistently support large marble so that it doesn’t fall off before entering the last inclined plane. Last inclined plane shaped with V in the bottom to guide the marble to the bottom to trigger section 2.
Day 6 Last minute fixes before setting up for trial run of entire machine. Trial run uncovered trouble spots in the machine and transitions that need to be fixed.
Day 7 Another trial run with fixes.
Day 8 Run for the grade…and lit the candle!! NO ONE recorded the final run. There is no video footage of the entire Rube Goldberg machine.
Conclusion: The task that the class was to accomplish was to light a candle. At the end of the run, the candle was burning, so it worked.
Two major construction projects are underway that will greatly impact the traffic patterns of West Lindsey Street in Norman. The Oklahoma Department of Transportation is re-configuring both the Highway 9 and Lindsey Street exits in the largest single contract in the state’s history. Simultaneously, the City of Norman is completing the Lindsey Street Bond Project, widening the street from 24th Street to Berry and improving drainage, access, and streetscape.
According to the project overview from lindseystreetnorman.com, “…coinciding with the timeline of the ODOT’s work on the Lindsey interchange, the City of Norman will be implementing the Lindsey Street Bond Project, voted on by our citizens in 2012. West Lindsey Street extends from Interstate 35 to the campus of the University of Oklahoma.
Currently, the portion of the roadway between 24th Avenue and Berry Road is a 3-lane roadway and is the most congested corridor in the Oklahoma City metropolitan area. This section of Lindsey Street has a traffic accident rate three times greater than the national average. Additionally, this area is ranked as the top storm water problem in Norman, referred to locally as Lake McGee.”
A May 13, 2017 newsok.com article reported that the project was 75% complete but “could be in jeopardy” due to state budget woes. Senator Jim Inhofe said ‘the project is one of 80 state highway projects under review for potential shutdown due to state funding issues’ but believes that President Trump’s commitment to infrastructure improvements will help secure the additional funds needed to complete the $71 million project. ‘I feel we will be back in the infrastructure business. I think we can look for good things to come. We will be holding his feet to the fire.'”
In the meantime, as construction continues, businesses on Lindsey Street are struggling to stay open. Some businesses have closed temporarily or even permanently due to the congestion and inaccessibility of the construction area.
According to an OU Daily article, “To combat the negative effects of the construction, merchants and the Norman Chamber of Commerce have started monthly meetings at Sooner Legends Restaurant to discuss ways to increase shopping traffic on Lindsey Street.
John Woods, president and CEO of the Norman Chamber of Commerce said the ‘…construction will have definite benefits once it is completed, but it will take the residents of Norman to keep businesses around the area during this time. What we don’t want to have happen is business storefronts that are empty and abandoned because we couldn’t support and didn’t support those businesses during this process.'”
Certain stress accompanies a move from a small school to a large university. That’s something Taber Kaspereit hopes fewer freshmen will feel this year when they start at the University of Oklahoma.
Kaspereit, a health and wellness science senior, said he remembers what the transition from high school to college was like, and recognized the positive impact the Camp Crimson had on the process. It’s a positive feeling he wants other students from small towns to have.
Camp Crimson, a freshman orientation program hosted on the OU campus, had its first session June 21 to 23. About 600 incoming students took part in the event.
For Castino, the event is a great way to introduce students to one another and to get them more familiar with campus.
“The biggest benefit is they come to campus in August a lot more comfortable because they know someone,” she said.
Kaspereit said he met upperclassmen, who he looked up to as a freshman. They helped him find his place at OU.
He said transitioning from a small school to OU can be daunting, especially when considering OU’s 2016 enrollment was 31,250 student. But his goal is to work to make students excited to be at the university, while helping calm the nerves of those freshmen.
“Being from a small town, I’m relatable,” he said. “They see they can do it, too.”