The Ugly Truth on Mental Health – Why Bother?
Posted on June 12th, 2017 @ 3:00 pm

I went to the movies yesterday and saw this ad. I was yelling at it, well, not yelling at it, but talking loudly, at it.

You see, there’s an ugly side about getting mental health treatment. It’s called being told you aren’t crazy enough to get short term disability.

I mean really. What good is it to ask for help and get told no, because you are sane enough to know you are sane?

I’m in a catch-22.

I suffer from depression. I have for years. And I try to fight it. I do. But, it’s a chemical imbalance.

At the moment, I am fighting it big time. Life is a stressor. It’s a big stressor. I tried to fight it and do what I must do, but at times, life can get at you. Your medication may not work.

At this time, since Hurricane Matthew, actually, I’ll take that back,it’s been before the hurricane, but I’m using it as a cutoff at the moment, life has been hell for me. There’s a lot of stuff in my life that I have been trying to take care of, in addition to working 40+ hours at work.

In the beginning of May, I was hospitalized at a mental health treatment center for a week. When I got out, I was told not to rush back to work.

Well, here’s where it gets dicey. I am on leave and it’s approved, but I’m not medical disabled at the moment to work. So unpaid leave it is.

And that’s the catch-22.

I’m sane enough to know I’m not mentally well but not mentally well enough to return to work. And because I’m not drooling and hearing voices in my head to have me committed even longer, I can’t draw short time disability. Oh, and while I’m not working, I need to pay for my health care costs out of pocket.

So, I don’t have money to pay for my health care. My health care that pays for the medications I need to be mental fit.

No wonder people don’t go get the help they need. No wonder people lose it and go postal. I’m fucked.

We’re told to get help and when we need help, this is what we get told.

I just wanted enough money to get me through this time of need. I don’t want a yacht. I just want to get healthy and return to work. I don’t want to be a sobbing mess.

In the end, I’m being punished for trying to do the right thing.

And here’s the thing. I know I’m not alone. There are many people out there in my situation that are doing all they can to become better. They are following the advice of their mental health teams. They take their medications. They are doing the best they can, but they are told that they aren’t disabled. They aren’t in need of help according to guidelines.

I write this entry not only as a well to express my feelings on this, but to warn others. It’s no use getting help when no one will help you. Really. No wonder there is a stigmata when it comes to mental health.

The mental health treatment center failed me. They couldn’t send my records over to the company that I would take care of my short term disability. The company handling my short term disability failed me. They never DEMANDED my records. Really, they just can’t seem to grasp the human side of mental illness. I’m well enough not to be hospitalized, but I’m not well enough to return to work. Being aware of what is going on doesn’t mean I’m not troubled. And that’s that the boils down to. I feel like me and people like me are being told that our mental health doesn’t matter in the long run. We are just a bother to society. We are worthless. We are not in need of help.

You can try to be rational all you want to me, but I’m in an irrational mood. I hate that I feel this way. I don’t want to feel this way. But damn it, my mind is broken. Just because you can’t see it, doesn’t mean it’s not there. You can’t see broken bones sometimes, unless you have an x-ray, but when they aren’t working, we know people are disabled. Why do we treat mental illness differently? I don’t see you as telling me it’s a medical definition. I see it as you belittling me and making my worth worthless. I’m broken; I know it. But I’m not broken enough to be fixed within the system.

So yes, seeing this ad yesterday really pissed me off. What good is asking for help when you can’t get any help at all? Mental health help is just a farce after all (Except for my therapist team helping me. At least they care. At least I’m not just a random piece of paper to them).


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Life · Politics & Current Events



Another Example of Destroying History: Nash Farm Battlefield
Posted on May 25th, 2017 @ 9:39 am

We have become like Rome. Does anyone know anything about the ancient city of Carthage? Very little is known about them compared to what is known about ancient Rome. You know why? Once Rome won the Punic Wars overall, the Romans destroyed whatever they could. I wrote a paper about this in a history class.  It was only a 1 page piece, but the professor went over the paper in class.

I bring this up as the biggest example of destroying history. Another big example is the Taliban’s destroying of the Buddhas of Bamiyan.

This story on the Nash Farm Battlefield is a recent example.

Nash Farm is a battlefield in Henry County, GA, owned by the county. I’ve driven by it a few times, but never stopped at it. It was never opened when I was in the area. One County Commissioner took it upon herself to tell the group running the park to take down the Confederate flag flying outside on the grounds because it was offensive. Then later, she demanded that they take down ALL the Confederate flags INSIDE the museum at the battlefield.

Mind you, this is a Civil War battlefield. The flag on display at a Civil War battlefield is appropriate here. The flag is part of the story the battlefield and museum are trying to discuss.

When word of this demand was heard by the major patron of the battlefield, he withdrew his support AND his artifacts. This in turn has caused the group running the battlefield to close the compound on June 1, 2017.

This is another example of what I feared would happen when people started calling for the banning of the Confederate flags. This is another example of removing history because it’s “offensive.” News flash: history is always offensive. If we start removing one history because it’s offensive, then we have to remove ALL history. I’m tired of being told history can’t be told because it’s offensive.

Shame on Commissioner Dee Clemmons for trying to see to the end of this battlefield. This battlefield is just a part of Georgia’s legacy as is 501 Auburn Ave in Atlanta. This battlefield is just a part of Georgia’s legacy as is 10 E Oglethorpe Ave in Savannah. We should respect our history as it led us to what we are today.  We shouldn’t try to hide it like it’s some deformed child. History is what it is.  We can’t change the past.  We can only learn from it.

What is the next thing we will be told to forget about?

Previous examples:


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Politics & Current Events



Post Town Hall Analysis
Posted on January 19th, 2017 @ 8:29 pm

AASU Merger Town Hall

I went to the town hall as I said I would. I mad a lot of observations and about 6 pages of notes from this meeting.

All of the local news stations made it to the meeting. I saw WTOC and WTGS’s cars before I got in. I saw a camerman from WSAV in the auditorium. I drove past WJCL’s car as I was leaving the campus.

Pre-Meeting:

At 4:00 the crowd was sparse, but but 4:30, it was a packed house. The Pirate teams sat together and made the biggest noise. They wore their team shirts.

My Calculus professor was 2 rows behind me. I heard him crack a joke. about the irony of the meeting being late because the panel got stuck in traffic. The meeting started on time, but I got what he said.

For a brief moment, a girl was sitting behind me with a maroon shirt that said TREASURE SAVANNAH in gold writing.  I remarked about the irony of the shirt.  Basically, that’s why she wore it.

Meeting:

The panel for the meeting were:

  • Shelley C. Nickel, Executive Vice Chancellor for Strategy and Fiscal Affairs, Board of Regents
  • John M. Fuchko, III, Vice Chancellor for Organizational Effectiveness, Board of Regents
  • Dr. Linda M. Bleicken, Armstrong State University President
  • Dr. Jaimie Hebert, Georgia Southern University President

They have the AASU stream on You Tube, so you can watch it all in its glory:

My remarks aren’t going be in order of the meeting.  I’m just trying to keep the thoughts all together.

Bleicken is well loved by the school.  Personally, I’m not a fan of hers.  I can’t pinpoint it. It’s a gut feeling. In her opening remarks, she states this is a scary time.  She asks the crowd to be welcoming.

For the start of the Q&A, Nickel was asked about when this merger began.  She didn’t have an answer as to when THIS merger was decided.  Her answer was the entire BOR process started in 2010. She gave a standard spiel about the history of mergers, but when it came to when this specific one started, she didn’t answer it. That irritated me.  I don’t care about your history of merging 8 other schools into 4.  I wanted the history of THIS one.

There was the question about this being a consolidation or acquisition. Fuchko remarked it’s a consolidation and he has a specific meaning for that word.  What that is, I don’t know. Nickel remarked it’s a 18 month process and the U.S. Department of Education and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools will be involved.

There will be a Consolidating Committee developed that will have to listen to BOR.  It will consist of 20 members from Armstrong and 20 members from Georgia Southern.  There will also be a board member from Savannah State to keep SSU’s interest respected and accepted during this process.

For the name Armstrong and its legacy, Bleicken gives a brief history of the school’s start.  Mentions how Don Waters, the local member of was vocal about BOR keeping the legacy alive. Then, she deferred to Hebert.  Hebert supports keeping the name, in some ways, wants Southern to be like Armstrong. He doesn’t want to close the campus.  He likes the way Armstrong has its Liberty Center campus and what it goes for the military.

Later, there was a question about the impact on the GI bill.  Bleicken answered, but it was so convoluted, she never answered the question at all! It was one of those non-answer answers.  Hebert and Fuchko did answer the question that they will do their best and  all they can to promote and keep the relationship Armstrong has with the military community and Fuchko essentially implied he would be personally invested in this part of the merger consolidation.

No answers on programs moving and causing commutes. Hebert says this should bring comfort to the students.  They replied with a big fat NO.  But, the won’t know where departments will be until they get further into the merger. There was a question about transportation, but Hebert said their goal is not to have shuttling.  They are want to bring engineering into Savannah.

If a student has an out-of-state waiver for in-state rates, the merged school will honor them. For monies from the Armstrong Foundation, Fuchko said since the donors wanted the money to be invested into Armstrong, they have a fiduciary duty to keep the money at Armstrong.  Most like this means the money will stay at this campus.

Bleicken said if there were any cuts to faculty and staff, it will be on the upper levels of management. Herbet came across as not wanting to lose staff and faculty at the Armstrong Campuses.  He wants the standards are Armstrong to remain, but acknowledges that the committee will need to determine the new standards.

In terms of fees, there was discussion about how the Hinesville Only students don’t pay some of the fees that Savannah students pay since they do not use those facilities and programs.  They are going to try to look into it seeing if it works that Savannah Only students do not have to pay Statesboro fees.  That’s been one of the biggest concerns for Savannah students in that they don’t want to pay for Statesboro’s campus and not get to indulge in the facilities and programs.

Both school have master plans to rebuild and refresh their campuses.  Most likely, they will take both those plans and consolidate them into one using the best course of action for both campuses.

All credits will transfer between the current schools and the new school.  Alumni degrees, like mine, will forever be Armstrong.  There will be no change there.

GSU and ASU families both asked about student life and Greek life.  Herbert has no clue as to what it going on, but understanding that these 2 school’s don’t know each other and have different walks of life, they need to get the student governments together and find out what can be consolidated as one unit and what can be broken into 2 units.  Herbert said he can see the emotions in the crows, understands out emotions, but said he owned the response into how Armstrong’s community is impacted in this all.

Athletics seems to get the biggest response. Whenever talking about them, the student-athletes were loud.  Blecken said they would honor all scholarships.  Herbert effectively said that it’s wait and see just like the Greek life. When discussion Greek life, from what I overheard, the Girls’ Basketball Team walked out. They had enough.  Students were yelling about what happens to the coaching staff.

Post-Meeting:

As people were leaving the meeting, many people had the same thoughts I did.  Half the meeting seems to be a meeting of platitudes and non-answers.  For answers, it was mainly “I don’t know.”

My View:

Basically, the take away from the meeting was they are basically clueless as to what’s going to happen. Which I find hard to swallow since they had to have had a clue about some parts of consolidation to even get this far.

Let me just say this: if I had been a professor, the questions given to the panel was their homework, they would have failed. They couldn’t answer most of the questions without some form of the phrase “I don’t know.” Not very reassuring to the students, faculty, and staff losing Armstrong.

I am still not happy about this merger at the moment. I think what angers me the most is that was so hidden from the public and the staff and faculty.  Many of them didn’t know until it was announced. It just comes across as if the Armstrong community’s input BEFORE the vote was not important.  It was a slap to the community’s face.

To be honest, Nickel, when giving answers, she gave the most vague answers of the night. The crowd did not respect her.  And Bleicken?  She just came across with pageant queen answers.  Half the time, my mind is thinking “I’d have to say April 25th. Because it’s not too hot, not too cold, all you need is a light jacket” as she talked. I really wished these women had not spoken at all. There was nothing from them that seems to satisfy the crowd. Their answers lacked substance.

However, Fuchko and Herbert were promising.  Fuchko said that two of his alma maters, which are the surviving Kennesaw State University and Georgia State University, have been through this.  Herbert talked about what can they take from Armstrong and apply to Southern. They may not have had the answers, but they were engaging with the crowd and taking in the thoughts and concerns the questions were about. I only hope that it wasn’t just platitudes, but real feelings that will keep Armstrong live post merger.


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Armstrong State · Politics & Current Events · Savannah



Armstrong students and Armstrong alumni – Today is the big town hall.
Posted on January 19th, 2017 @ 8:31 am

Today is the big town hall where they try to explain way the merger.

At the moment, I plan on going to the meeting. I plan on wearing a maroon shirt I have. I urge others going that support Armstrong to wear maroon and gold, too. I have an old AASU notebook with paper.  I might take that to take notes on the following questions I submitted:

  1. Who suggested this merger? I’m not taking about the announcement from a few days ago. I am talking about the VERY first day this came up.
  2. When was it decided it was to be Georgia Southern and Armstrong to merge? Again, I’m not taking about the announcement from a few days ago. I am talking about the VERY first day this came up. We know it didn’t take less than a week to do the study on this merger.
  3. How long has this merger been in the works without public input? Be honest with us. The dishonesty shown in this merger so far has led to a lot of anger.
  4. When did the faculty and staff of both school find out about this merger?
  5. What will happen to the student athletes of Armstrong? I think they are getting the worst deal in this all.
  6. Why are we waiting until AFTER the official vote to perform town halls and meetings to perform the merger with a deadline of 1/1/18 for the merge? Look, I understand wanting to keep people from ruining this for the BORUSG, but the way this has been handled has been poor. Instead of trying to get us to to rally behind this, all this has done is foster anger and worry that this is a dirty deal.
  7. What are the benefits for Savannah? Are classes moving? Will both campuses be offering classes for a major? Not every student who goes to Armstrong wanted to go to GSU. Not every student going to Armstrong has the capacity to handle a school the size of GSU. Not every person in Savannah wants to drive to GSU.
  8. How will tuition costs be handled? Are you going to increase the fees at Armstrong to subside GSU. How do we know if the money for Armstrong will be reinvested into Armstrong? I think this is a major factor that should have been addressed as trying to pass this merger along.

We’ll see if any of them get answered. As for anyone that can’t make the meeting, they are live streaming it at http://consolidation.armstrong.edu/. I’ll try to post later, when I can, to summarize the meeting.


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Armstrong State · Politics & Current Events · Savannah



Asking the important questions now. Armstrong-Georgia Southern merger
Posted on January 12th, 2017 @ 6:05 pm

Armstrong State University will host a Town Hall Meeting that is open to the public on Thursday, January 19, at 4:30…

Posted by Armstrong State University on Thursday, January 12, 2017

Ok, so now that the merger, I mean takeover, of Armstrong by GSU has been approved, they have scheduled a town hall at Armstrong.

Since they are soliciting questions for it, I e-mailed the following questions to the solicitation e-mail. I also left a few comments with my question. I tried not to be rude, but assertive.

My question list:

  1. Who suggested this merger? I’m not taking about the announcement from a few days ago.  I am talking about the VERY first day this came up.
  2. When was it decided it was to be Georgia Southern and Armstrong to merge? Again, I’m not taking about the announcement from a few days ago.  I am talking about the VERY first day this came up. We know it didn’t take less than a week to do the study on this merger.
  3. How long has this merger been in the works without public input? Be honest with us. The dishonesty shown in this merger so far has led to a lot of anger.
  4. When did the faculty and staff of both school find out about this merger?
  5. What will happen to the student athletes of Armstrong? I think they are getting the worst deal in this all.
  6. Why are we waiting until AFTER the official vote to perform town halls and meetings to perform the merger with a deadline of 1/1/18 for the merge? Look, I understand wanting to keep people from ruining this for the BORUSG, but the way this has been handled has been poor.  Instead of trying to get us to to rally behind this, all this has done is foster anger and worry that this is a dirty deal.
  7. What are the benefits for Savannah? Are classes moving?  Will both campuses be offering classes for a major? Not every student who goes to Armstrong wanted to go to GSU.  Not every student going to Armstrong has the capacity to handle a school the size of GSU.  Not every person in Savannah wants to drive to GSU.
  8. How will tuition costs be handled?  Are you going to increase the fees at Armstrong to subside GSU. How do we know if the money for Armstrong will be reinvested into Armstrong? I think this is a major factor that should have been addressed as trying to pass this merger along.

I hope the Alumni Association and the majority of the faculty and staff knows that the anger of this takeover is not directed towards them. They are getting the wrath of the public, including from me, but they are the facilitators between the public and the administrators at the Georgia Southern, Armstrong, and The Board of Regents. The administrators behind this quick push of the merger without public input BEFORE the fact is where my anger lies.

And that is why I am pushing these questions. It’s why I’m going to that meeting. I want accountability from them. I want the truth.

In the Savannah Morning News article posted today, there is the quote from the president of Armstrong (I can not type her name. I have never liked that woman since she took over.):

Our student athletes’ wherewithal will be maintained. If they have been promised a scholarship, that scholarship will continue. We will not turn students out.

Is she just deaf to the outcry from others? The comments on the petition have other stories. Is she telling me to kids that have been told one thing is wrong? I hope an athlete with a different story speaks up and explain their situation.

In the same article:

Asked about the commute after the meeting, Georgia Southern President Jaimie Hebert said there are already students and staff commuting to Statesboro from Savannah and Hinesville and vice versa.

“It’s not a long commute in this day and age,” Hebert said. “… All of these roadways and commutes exist already. What we have the opportunity to do now is improve on those efficiencies of those commutes and the offerings for those students.”

Again, are they bullheaded?

Does it matter if the commute is nothing today? It’s the fact many of us don’t want to make the commute. At the moment, some of us are going to have to assume the improvement is shifting majors to a single campus, i.e nursing to Savannah and Liberal Arts and Technology to Statesboro. Wouldn’t that be the efficiency they are talking about?

I had a Facebook friend mentioned that she went to Armstrong because she had public transportation available to commute to the school. Unless GSU can have an express shuttle bus between Statesboro and Savannah, people trying to better themselves, but left at the mercy of public transportation to get to school will not be able to go to GSU. They will choose to go to Savannah State if transportation is their major factor.

I urge people concerned and/or anger about this merger takeover to submit questions and attend/or stream the town hall next Thursday.


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Armstrong State · Politics & Current Events



Poking the Bear
Posted on January 11th, 2017 @ 7:26 pm

My father said today I like to poke the bear.  I said a lot has been learned from someone poking the bear.

Well, it happened.  They approved the proposal to have Georgia Southern absorb Armstrong. Absorb is not the right word.  It was a takeover.

And what gets me is how people are saying it will be for the better.  Fine.  Prove it to me in other ways besides a press release. Don’t wait for the public input AFTER the vote.  Where was the public input and education BEFORE the vote?

There are 11 key questions that should be answered NOW:

  1. Who suggested this merger?
  2. When was it decided it was to be Georgia Southern and Armstrong to merge?
  3. How long has this merger been in the works without public input?
  4. When did the faculty and staff of both school find out about this merger?
  5. What will happen to the student athletes of Armstrong?
  6. Why are we waiting until AFTER the official vote to perform town halls and meetings to perform the merger with a deadline of 1/1/18 for the merge?
  7. What are the benefits for Savannah?
  8. How will tuition costs be handled?  

All viable questions in my mind.

They are planning a town hall at Armstrong (or should it now be the school formerly known as Armstrong) at 4:30 on the 19th at the Fine Arts Auditorium. I believe I will go.  If you are a student, I say go. They owe you that much.

I had a smaller Twitter discussion with a local reporter today. I asked why hasn’t anyone investigated the back story.  He replied that there is the town hall next week.  I think that got to me even more.  Why do we have to go forward?  Why can’t we know the history? What happened to investigative journalism? Perfect story for investigation.

A friend of mine that is an alumna of the now dead Southern Polytechnic State University said what else did I expect.  If the BORUSG wants it, they are going to do it. What happened to making them accountable? They did the same to SPSU as they did to Armstrong. See this article: Merging Into Controversy.

After this news, I went to the Armstrong Alumni Facebook page and asked about getting an Armstrong Alumni sticker for my car. They are going to send me one. I urge other alumni to get their Armstrong gear as fast as they can. The BORUSG will never take the following away from me, as much as they are going to now:

  1. I graduated from Armstrong Atlantic State University.
  2. All my college memories are from Armstrong Atlantic State University.
  3. My diploma will always be from AASU.  You can change my transcripts to GSU and you can reissue my diploma as being from GSU, but I will tell ANYONE that asks that it was from AASU.
  4. I will always be a Pirate.

 


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Armstrong State · Politics & Current Events · Savannah



The latest in the Georgia Southern takeover of Armstrong
Posted on January 10th, 2017 @ 7:10 pm

What more can I do to question this merger? Well for one, call it for what it is, a takeover.

This morning, I did call the man that is the district rep about this merger.  I left a message with his secretary.  I don’t know if he got it or not.  I basically called them out for doing this in secret, that I don’t want Armstrong to lose its charm.  I explained my history and why Armstrong worked for me.  And finally, I said what they are doing to the athletes is shameful.

It’s out my hands now. Based on all the information I know, there is no stopping it.  The best thing I can do is pray that my Armstrong family survives.

Even with this merger most likely going through, I don’t have to be quiet about it.  I’ll call it out for the dirty deal that it is. It is dirty because it was done with giving the public less than a week to provide input. Not that the public input is need since they are going to do it, no matter what. And that’s where my anger and disgust are focused on.

I was reading over the petition entries today and one caught my eye:

Amy Cortez
Savannah, GA

9 hours ago
Reason for signing

This was brought up in a 2015 student leadership meeting (presidents of clubs in attendance etc), and it was unanimously opposed. We thought the guy was crazy for even bringong it up, and that it was not even on the table…. not to mention we JUST spent all that money rebranding Armstrong and put up the signs. I did not apply to any other college because I knew Armstrong was for me. Don’t ruin it.

It got me questioning things again. I guess being the granddaughter of a journalist does that. Who was the person that proposed this to the Student Leadership Meeting? What ideas were brought up? What happened in that meeting? This comment there tells me this has been in the plans for months.

By the way, the petition is at 2,744 entries.

There is an article by WTOC today that has a few quotes that I believe should be shared.

First, from Prof. Tony Morris:

It would have been nice to have a little more heads up that this was happening.

I never had Prof. Morris, but I recognize his name and his face is in my mind. I agree more notice was owed to the Armstrong community.

And the second quote to share from Faye Kirschner:

We’ve heard it’s pretty much a done deal.

So, we have professors basically being told, as I infer from these quotes and the letter a friend shared with me that “Armstrong, you’re dead and you’re going to obey your new Georgia Southern overlords.” Well, not quite that way, but I love the hyperbole in that statement.  Hyperbole is a beautiful thing at times.

At this point, it’s no longer about the merger to me.  It’s about the callus way the Board of Regents went about to get this done.  We the people, the citizens of Georgia, shouldn’t take it lying down.  Make them answer our questions.  Make them give details.  Call them out for the secretive way they did this.


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Armstrong State · Politics & Current Events · Savannah



Cart Before The Horse
Posted on January 9th, 2017 @ 6:36 pm

I’ve been reading the stories about the Georgia Southern takeover of Armstrong, because let’s face it, it’s not a merger, it is one school absorbing the other.  There was a Facebook entry on the protests today on WTOC’s site.  One of the comments was as follows:

Omg the snowflakes….

I have to support the students protesting in this.  I may not agree with ever single student protest there is, but I think the Armstrong community can smell some manure when it’s being plated in front of them. They aren’t snowflakes all the time, and in this case, I’m not going to call them snowflakes.  They are asking deep questions that deserve some answers.

The Armstrong community is keeping each other in the loop when we can.

Well, there was a post on the Reddit stating that Armstrong would cease to exist on 1/1/18.

The comment:

Well, a friend sent me a letter from a professor of her. I trust the letter as I had the same professor. I’m not going to post it for now, because it’s not my place to share the whole thing. However, there are 2 lines in the letter that are very interesting. I think they should be shared.

The most interesting line in the letter is:

We will remain Armstrong throughout 2017.

Does that NOT line up with the Reddit comment or what? As another friend of mine as said, who knows the true story and who hasn’t been in the loop in get go?!  The Reddit comment at this point is not a rumor, but a fact.

The other line in the letter is:

The main point of this document is to ensure that you understand what is known, and can differentiate that from rumors.

Well, I’m sorry, but that point of the letter doesn’t help.

“Rumors” are going around because the Board of Regents has placed the cart before the horse. They are so HELLBENT on this merger, it has been done behind the community’s back without an input or questions about why this is going to happen, besides “it we better both communities.” To me, all that is  talk and buzz worthiness. It doesn’t give me answers and it doesn’t make me feel better.  Due to the time ratio between announcement and the vote, yes, it bothers me as it bothers others.  That should bother everyone.

The community has no answers. Our source of answers to our questions is that from those that post on Facebook and the petition on THEIR viewpoints. Students crying fowl because of the bait and switch tactics of the commitments and scholarships of student athletes.

Also mentioned in the letter is that basically, no one knows how the merger is going to take place. I think a former state legislature and local newsman has said it well:

Some have messaged me with questions or concerns about the status of the Armstrong “merger” proposal. As previously…

Posted by Sonny Dixon on Monday, January 9, 2017

So yes, there are questions that need to be asked and answered:

  1. Who suggested this merger?
  2. When was it decided it was to be Georgia Southern and Armstrong to merge?
  3. How long has this merger been in the works without public input?
  4. When did the faculty and staff of both school find out about this merger?
  5. What will happen to the student athletes of Armstrong?
  6. Why are we waiting until AFTER the official vote to perform town halls and meetings to perform the merger with a deadline of 1/1/18 for the merge?
  7. What are the benefits for Savannah?
  8. How will tuition costs be handled?  

I know there are more specific questions and answers to be had, but for now, these are the big ones for me. These should have been answered before this process started, not after the fact.

The friend that sent me the letter thinks it will be a good thing. She shared the numbers about Armstrong having a low rate of graduation being “on-time.” Who or what defines “on-time?” As for Armstrong, it is not a “traditional” college. Yes, it does have a lot of transfers to Georgia Southern, but mainly of these transfers are kids that aren’t ready to move away from home. An environment like Armstrong allows these kids that extra growth they need before moving to another school. A lot of the students are non-traditional to begin with. Life is going to dictate when they can graduate, not a per-determined “on-time” schedule. A majority of my classmates were non-traditional. Very few were traditional. As for some of the traditional students, they came to Armstrong for reason they have stated in the petition. Basically, Armstrong provided them the environment they needed, not Georgia Southern. Some came for a smaller campus. Some came for the athletics. Some came for a school that wasn’t known as a party school. I do not like that push to increase “on-time” graduations when not everyone can be full time students.

Why am I and others having to have to ask if this environment will preserved BEFORE the vote? Again, this should have been resolved before the vote! Many of these questions should have been asked and answered.  If they were asked and answered, why doesn’t the public know?

Yes, I am probably beating a dead horse at this point. To me, it’s not about the merger in many concepts. To me, it’s about how this whole “merger” takeover came about. It’s the lack of transparency and communication.

By the way, rumors aren’t rumors if they are true.

I have e-mailed the BOR.  I called them today, only to be told to leave a message.  They probably took my information and placed it directly into the garbage can. I really think they have turned into the Vancome Lady plugging her ears.

Overall, as far as I can tell, this process is just a turd sandwich with a nice shiny wrapper. That’s my opinion for now.


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Armstrong State · Politics & Current Events · Savannah



School Memories
Posted on January 8th, 2017 @ 9:46 am

Additional information on the Armstrong Atlantic State University situation:

  • The Board of Regents has a contact form and an Instagram account (@borusg). Contact them there was as well as the other ways I’ve mentioned.
  • On Facebook, people are using the tag #NoMerger
  • Share information with one another! I know the Armstrong Alumni has an extensive network, even if we’ve not members of the official group.
  • Attend the rallies other people have scheduled. I would love to go if my job gave me more than 30 minutes for lunch. Information as below:

Merger Protest at Armstrong in front of President Bleicken’s office Monday AND Tuesday starting at noon. We need to…

Posted by Sonny Dixon on Sunday, January 8, 2017

Here is an example of one of my Instagram posts for Armstrong, highlighting some of my time there:

Just some memories from my time at @armstrong_u #nomerger #armstrongstateuniversity #AASUforever

A photo posted by Shawn Latta (@peachy92) on

I urge others to do the same! The petition has 2059 signatures on it. Believe me, it was only at 47 when I signed it on Friday. I know it doesn’t represent the full amount of people angered by this.


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Armstrong State · Photography · Politics & Current Events · Savannah



Armstrong-Georgia Southern Merger stories
Posted on January 7th, 2017 @ 3:27 pm

For people that aren’t in the Savannah, GA area, but did attend Armstrong, links to news articles on this matter.

Original posting date: Jan 7, 2017 at 2:27 PM
Updated: Jan 12, 2017 at 6:09 PM

WTOC:

WSAV

WJCL

WTGS

Savannah Morning News: (may require paid login)

Connect Savannah:

If you know of any other links I’m missing on this subject, please link to them in the comments section.

There is also the Reddit discussions: Discussion #1 Discussion #2, and the petition which shares a lot of comments from alumni and students alike.


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Armstrong State · Politics & Current Events · Savannah



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