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Students leave teacher with lasting message

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Walking into the administration offices of Agua Fria High School in Avondale, Arizona, Joshua Murray, 25, had no idea he would become known as the crazy teacher. What Murray has accomplished in his three-years at Agua Fria is as eclectic as the man himself. He covered the walls with photos of sloths. He believes it is his spirit animal. Each class begins with a Justin Timberlake song playing. Murray is the teacher of the Agua Fria High School AVID Program which is set towards preparing students for college. The Advancement Via Individual Determination Program is a nation wide program catered to steer students through high school entering higher education. Agua Fria started the program four years ago and the students graduating May, will be the first to complete the program. The AVID program trains educators the necessary skills to...

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School of hard knocks a reality for UA music hopeful

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U of A alumni Camden West has started his journey towards his fame and fortune. The young musician is traveling around Arizona and other West Coast cities to gain a fan base and hopefully a recording contract. “The best part is when people, people that I have never met before turn up because they have heard my music and wanted to see a live performance” said Camden West West started this journey nearly a year ago after graduating from The University of Arizona in the spring of 2016 with a major in communication and a minor in music. The Las Vegas native is currently touring Arizona and other parts of the West Coast. His love for music started at the age of 6 when he began playing the piano. At the age of 9 he added the guitar and...

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Tucson native overcomes barriers before climbing Billboard charts

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  Dario was only three-years-old when he realized music was going to be a huge part of his life. Nine albums later in the span of 13 years in the industry as a Pop, R&B and Dance singer-songwriter and he has released his most successful album yet. “Point of No Return” was released in February and has landed itself as one of the top three independent albums in the country on the Billboard Charts. “I remember when I got the call,” Dario, who only goes by his first name, said from his Los Angeles home. “I started bawling like a child.” By his teenage years the former Flowing Wells High School graduate had already began singing and dancing locally in Tucson, but decided to relocate to LA  to further pursue his career as a performer in 2006. As any mother...

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Legislative roundup: Far from being done

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PHOENIX – The legislature passed its 100 day mark this week with still no budget – or solution to budget issues – in sight. The legislative session was scheduled to come to a close at the end of April, but an extra special session or two looks to be on the horizon if the budget can’t be delivered soon. Take some initiative Gov. Doug Ducey has been digging into initiative bills with fervor this session. Within the day that the legislature gave final approval to HBill 2244 and just two days after its renaming, Ducey signed the bill into law. HB2244 modifies the current standard for initiatives from substantial compliance to strict compliance. Basically, the bill will hold citizen-driven ballot measures to a higher legal standard and makes it more difficult for citizen-driven ballot measures to make it to the voters....

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Understanding the most powerful objects in the universe

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Usually when people observe hot gas coming out of something, they are watching a politician deliver a speech. Astronomers have found objects that do the same thing but in a far more spectacular fashion. Quasars contain a supermassive black hole, with a disk of gas orbiting around the black hole and are most commonly found near the center of galaxies. As the gas orbits the black hole, it becomes charged and energy is released in the form of electromagnetic radiation. Astronomer Paul Smith of the Steward Observatory at the University of Arizona has dedicated nearly a decade to observing these extraordinary objects. Using the 2.3m Bok telescope at Kitt Peak National Observatory, Smith has spent many nights viewing quasars. “This plays into my love of working at a telescope and obtaining accurate information with specialized instruments,” Smith said. According to Smith, other...

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‘Pickle suits’ and putting on the gun

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NOGALES, Ariz — They wear “pickle suits,” ride horses, and read books to elementary schoolers. Being pelted with rocks is a daily hazard, as is occasionally being shot at. Make no mistake — being a part of the Border Patrol is not an easy job. On one hand, it’s hours of sitting in a car, watching a section of the border. On the other, it is dealing with potentially dangerous situations involving drug runners or heartbreaking scenes of desperate families in peril. This double-edged sword is just one facet of a deeply complex institution that guards nearly 2,000 miles of border between the United States and México. Hot-button issues such as immigration or the war on drugs, so commonly spoken about on the national stage, are a fact of life for olive-uniformed agents walking the fence or trudging through the desert. Agents...

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Pokémon Go transitions to Pokémon Gone

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The release of Pokémon Go sent millions of Pokémon fans into a frenzy to catch virtual creatures like Pikachu, Evee, and Dragonite after its release last summer, but has since lost its following among users. “There was such a hype when it was coming out from my friends and family and of course I wanted to join the band wagon,” said Mariana Hyland. Hyland was a Pokémon card fan as a child, but wanted to see what the game was all about. She was an avid user of the game and even an admin for the Pokémon Go Arizona Facebook page. Hyland was the definition of a Pokémon fanatic. According to recent reports released by cross-platform analytics company comScore, Pokémon Go user rates peaked at 28.5 million users on July 13, 2016, while the application simultaneously became one of the...

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Joining the breakfast club

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Breakfast in bed may be more productive than you think. According to a National Center for Biotechnology informational study, skipping breakfast can lead to an appetite for high-calorie foods such as pancakes, waffles, and eggs Benedict, rather than something healthy or low-calorie. Everyone remembers sitting at the kitchen table as a child trying to stomach every last bite of oatmeal that their parents told them they had to eat. Their reason inevitably was “breakfast is the most important meal of the day.” According to Tucson nutritionists, this idea still holds true. “That is because if we don’t eat it, typically our blood sugar is unstable and our adrenals will have to work a lot harder, and people can end up being exhausted,” said Lauren Kanzler, a certified clinical nutritionist who owns her own online private practice. There is a pop-culture term...

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Finding a job post-graduation is looking brighter

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Companies plan to hire an average of 5 percent more college graduates this year than in 2016. That’s according to the National Association of Colleges and Employers, who surveyed companies who hire college students (NACE Job Outlook 2017). Arizona is tied with Alaska per capita for last place for the lowest number of college graduation rates, according to the U.S. Department of Education. However, from a career perspective, these graduates may have a job waiting. Many are qualified — and, in some instances, overqualified — for jobs due the economy’s needs. And many have a “I’ll-take-what-I-can” mindset, officials say. In other words, 2017 poses the strongest job market since the recession. “The unemployment rate of young college graduates has since decreased due to stronger job growth, and now sits at 5.6 percent,” according to a recent report, “The labor market...

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Hayden sees its dying days

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It’s not a ghost town, but it feels like one. The streets of Hayden, Arizona, are lined with boarded-up businesses — Grimebusters Laundry, Casa Rivera Restaurant, an appliance store — and abandoned schools. Crumbling churches have “for sale” signs nailed to the doors, their crosses still beckoning worshippers for prayer. Traffic signs, symbols and road markings are rare. The Rex Theater hasn’t shown a movie since 1979. The foundations of former homes are charred pits, burned to the dusty ground with nothing salvageable to find in the rubble. If the wind could carry whispers from the past, what would Hayden have sounded like? Today, Hayden is quiet. Noises from the copper smelter chink and clang in the distance.                 Founded in 1911, Hayden was a company town owned by the Kennecott Copper...

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