Features

Long-form investigative articles covering people, events and issues that affect the student body. If you have an idea for us to cover, contact us at [email protected]

A Lesson in Life at The Ole Guardian Might Enlighten Some Students

I can never predict what type of reaction I will get when I tell people that I’m an editor at the Guardian. It’s pretty much 50-50 odds that people will either cringe or act honored to meet me. Whether people are impressed by the Guardian, my revelation is almost always met by tirades chock full of advice and constructive criticism. However, the criticism people typically offer usually reveals that they actually know very little about how UCSD’s official student newspaper is run — which encourages me to attempt to familiarize our readers with the methods behind our madness. First, I will attempt to explain the editing process through which our stories are processed. A writer does his duty, and the fruits of his labor are edited by his section editor. Meaning, for example, that a sports article first undergoes the editing of our sports editor, and a news article first faces the red pen of the news editor — sometimes the associate section editors take the reigns on this one. After being groomed by section editors, our stories meet the copy editors. These individuals perform most of the heavier editing — they correct grammatical errors, spelling mistakes, incoherent and incomplete sentences, etc. They also edit according to Associated Press style, which in light of outsiders’ critiques, is perhaps the most misunderstood aspect of our editing process. I state this only because I have heard many individuals complain that the Guardian consistently contains many mistakes. I used to be one of those people: Three years ago, I applied to be a copy reader specifically because I thought I was seeing errors all over the official UCSD student newspaper, and I was embarrassed for their obvious blunders. However, what I did not realize is that the Guardian edits according to the policies set forth in the AP Stylebook. In short, the AP Stylebook is the copy editors’ Bible — it is a dictionary-style index of almost every term or word that could end up in a newspaper article, and it explains the official Associated Press stance on how and when each term should be used, technically and grammatically. So, when I watch students pick up Guardians in front of Center Hall and study their contents during lecture, it’s my turn to cringe when I hear people idly complain about the errors they see. Yes, too often we let misspellings and misuses slip through the editing process, but most of the time, those “”errors”” are strict renditions of the rules of our Bible. Back to the editing process — after the copy editors do their thing, the article switches paths and enters the realm of design. Our design editor isn’t responsible for editing the content of any story like section editors and copy editors are. Instead he ensures that each story nicely falls into place among the plethora of advertisements, photographs, graphics, etc., that fills the rest of our pages. This is also the stage during which the art produced by our photography and graphics editors, and their respective departments, is placed into our pages. After all is said and done at this stage, each section of the newspaper enters the two-stage final editing process. First, an entire section (i.e. news, sports, hiatus, features, or opinion) is printed onto 11- by 17-inch paper, and these proofs are placed into the welcoming, dedicated hands of a managing editor (that’s what I am), where most of the screw-ups that the section editors and copy editors didn’t catch are corrected by way of red ink. But don’t let me toot my own horn — after my corrections are made, another set of proofs is given to the editor in chief, who hacks ’em up and continually reminds me that I will never catch every error, no matter how closely I edit. It’s a very humbling process. After the chief’s corrections are made, every section goes through a final printing, and these proofs are driven by the chief to our printer’s office, which is in El Cajon. Our deadline is midnight on Sundays and Wednesdays (because the Guardian comes out on Mondays and Thursdays, which I hope you already know). With every article going through at least four pairs of editing eyes (e.g. section editor, copy editor, managing editor, and then editor in chief), one might find it disheartening to know that we rarely catch every mistake. However, rest assured that we do our best to be thorough (come on — a minimum of four editors for every story is a lot of manpower), we are certainly open to suggestions (as long as it isn’t another complaint about the fact that horoscopes and the crossword puzzle only run on Mondays), and the AP Stylebook is responsible for the rest. Perhaps a better method of attack for those of you still dissatisfied with your newspaper, a method which I can surely vouch for, would be to take a look at an AP Stylebook and come fill out an application with us — we are on the third floor of the Student Center and we are open during regular business hours. Getting involved might be a good way to make some of that criticism I keep hearing just a little more constructive. ...

Strutting Toward Success

Express to Success, a Revelle-based organization, was created last year to help students improve their interpersonal and public speaking skills. However, this group is doing more than giving students confidence and public poise. This week, ETS will host its second annual charity fashion show competition, “”Remember the Time … ’80s Flashback,”” to help a San Diego-based charity known as Becky’s House. Becky’s House provides shelter for women and children who are victims of domestic abuse. The YWCA, which coordinated the project, also offers supportive services such as psychological and educational counseling, child care and job training. Crucial to the development of the program were its founders, DJs Jeff & Jer from STAR 100.7 FM. When a woman, fictitiously named Becky, called the Jeff & Jer morning radio show years ago, the idea for Becky’s House emerged. After it became apparent that the caller was suffering from domestic abuse, STAR listeners donated over $40,000 to help “”Becky”” and her 4-year-old son. What followed was a partnership between Jeff & Jer, STAR 100.7, the YWCA and City Councilwoman Barbara Warden that has made Becky’s House a reality. Jeff & Jer remain ardent supporters of the program, while Councilwoman Warden has led the way in procuring funding for building a 10-unit transition house. The San Diego YWCA is operating the program for the city. Stage and lighting director Ping Huang emphasized how both ETS and Becky’s House benefit from the event. “”Obviously I would like to see the fashion show generate a lot of support and publicity for Becky’s House,”” Huang said. “”But just as important is that our ETS students gain something from it as well. Modeling is not something all of us do every day, and it can be very difficult to do for the first time — especially when it is right in front of your peers and classmates. After the show, I hope that they all walk away with a new sense of confidence, poise and a sense of what they can accomplish.”” ETS member Diana Wong has already benefited from ETS. “”I’ve gained more confidence as a result of ETS,”” Wong said. “”I’m less shy, and I can communicate better.”” Monica Zakowski returns as co-master of ceremonies this year. “”I’m honored to be coming back,”” Zakowski said. “”This is all going for such a wonderful cause.”” According to ETS adviser La Verne Williams-Schoonover, talks about the fashion show began early fall quarter. ETS has striven to host a community service event each year. In response to the phenomenal success of last year’s fashion show, which raised over $4,000 for Becky’s House, ETS decided to host the event once again. This time, the goal is $5,000. “”I think the caliber of the show has definitely increased this year. We have entertainment, a live band and it’s all for free,”” Williams-Schoonover said. Unlike last year, however, ETS has received more help from organizations on and off campus, including S.O.L.O. organization Activation Energy Productions and the Girls League at La Jolla Country Day. Founded by Revelle student Ben Parcher, AEP aids in the production of charity-oriented organizations. La Jolla Country Day is a national organization whose San Diego chapter was founded by Jessica Adler. The Girls League participates in community events and has already raised $1,500 for Becky’s House. Williams-Schoonover would like to express her heartfelt appreciation to both organizations for their endless support. In addition to the entertainment and fashion show, there will also be prizes raffled off at the event. AEP Finance Producer Diana Kim sees the incentives of buying a raffle ticket as two-fold. “”I think primarily people should buy them for the prize,”” said Kim. “”But I think it’s also good knowing that when you buy one, every penny is going to Becky’s House, and it’s for a good cause.”” For everyone wondering why the ’80s was chosen as the theme, Williams-Schoonover offered the reason. “”It was a fun time — a time to dare to be different,”” Williams-Schoonover said. “”I think ETS models that belief that it’s OK to be different. It’s OK to step outside of the box.”” Also participating in the event are Old Navy, Banana Republic, Guess, Sun Diego Surf and Sports, Forever 21, Georgeou/Giorgio Armani, Wilsons Leather and Giorgio Tuxedo. Donations to be raffled will be provided by UCSD Parking and Transportation Services (eight “”A”” parking passes), Sony Corporate, Sam Goody, Sephora (UTC), Guess, Ben Bridges Jewelers (UTC), Wilsons Leather, MAC, Louis Vuitton, Duty Free (National City), Radio Shack, Starbucks (UTC), Warner Bros., Disney (UTC), Eddie Bauer, Pottery Barn (UTC), Kenneth Cole, AMC Theaters, book store certificates, Aveda, Georgeou (UTC), Sea World, Rocco (UTC), Gap Corporate, Sun Diego Surf and Sport, as well as several others. Joe Lake, an ETS graduate and model for the show, sees the show as a great way for the program to end the year. “”I see this show as the culmination of this program in bringing out the extrovert in all of us,”” Lake said. “”And I want to shake my little tooshie on the catwalk.”” Kris Schmidt, another member of ETS and model for the show, agrees. “”It’ll be a blast,”” Schmidt said. “”Remember the Time … ’80s Flashback”” the second annual charity fashion show competition and raffle for Becky’s House, presented by Express to Success, will take place at 6 p.m. on May 10 in Revelle’s Plaza Cafe. Immediately following the raffle, Club 911 will host a free dance. The charity raffle/fashion show will have no administrative costs and all proceeds will be donated to Becky’s House. Raffle tickets are $5 each or three for $10. ...

Dolly in the Snack Car, Okie J.R. Are Memories of Traveling on Amtrak

I traveled frequently with my family while growing up, but it wasn’t until recently that I discovered the pleasures of traveling alone. I use the term “”alone”” loosely; I wasn’t traveling with people I knew, but I was meeting people all the time. The people I met on the road were all very interesting to talk to. Over winter break, I embarked on a train trip that took me across the United States and Canada. When I wasn’t sleeping on the train, I was sleeping in hostels. I have since fallen in love with these forms of traveling, primarily because they foster social interaction. Trains and hostels are more interesting, stimulating and dollar-saving than the usual hotels and airplanes. Airplanes are filled with people traveling on business. They enter, sit and basically don’t get up until arrival. Sure it’s quick, but if I have the time, I would prefer to see the country. Hostels, like trains, are another great place to meet people. Strangers eat together, they drink together and talk with each other. My first trip on Amtrak came at the end of last summer, when I spent two months in Chicago. Being a native of Chicago, I have flown between Chicago and San Diego several times a year since I was 4 years old. It was time to ditch flying and really see what lay between the two cities. I set out on a Tuesday afternoon, and almost immediately met a guy named J.R. I was somewhat scared of him, as I later found out he had done time in San Quentin. But when I told him I was going to Oceanside, Calif., he got excited. He left Oceanside years ago to get away from his drug problem, stopped in Oklahoma, where his truck ran out of gas, and has lived there ever since. The drug problem explained his San Quentin time, but it was obvious to me that the problem wasn’t entirely behind him. He once grimaced in pain while sitting down because he had a pipe in his back pocket. Not a tobacco pipe. “”Oops, you didn’t see that,”” he said to me as he moved it to his front pocket. I did see it, and later when he came out of the smoking lounge with some other people, I could tell that they had put the pipe to use. I was surprised that someone would do such a thing on a train, but there was little doubt as to what had happened. They came out very amused at the most mundane things. Corn fields were entertaining to them. Train life was beginning to entertain me. Often I am most interested in talking to train personnel. Apparently I am not the only one, as they seem to have heard many of my questions a thousand times before. I now know where the crew sleeps, how well they sleep, how their shifts are scheduled, what their favorite routes are and why, how fast the train travels, and even how often people commit suicide by lying on the rails. I found it a very interesting life, and so did many of them. I also found that not all Amtrak employees enjoy their jobs. This winter, I traveled to Seattle, riding coach on Amtrak’s Coast Starlight. There were plenty of drunks on this two-day trip. Many started drinking in Los Angeles and didn’t stop until Dolly the snack car attendant closed the bar completely, much to everyone’s dismay. Some guys called her a bitch, almost in front of her face, and while I thought they were rude, they weren’t that far off: I tried to start a conversation with her by asking her how her day was and it didn’t go well. She wasn’t having a particularly bad day, it was almost like any other, she said. She hated her job. She sold snacks and drinks all day, and no, traveling wasn’t an interesting aspect of her job. It got old after four months, and that was 17 years ago. She advised me to pick a career I truly enjoy and told me her life was a sad story of someone who didn’t do that. I felt sorry for her and after talking to her over a two-day period I began to understand that she was having a rough time with the drunks on the trip. When she found out I was a writer, she told me I could write a book about the people on our trip, calling them the worst group of people she had seen in over six months. Little did she know I would end up writing about her. If any of you are ever on the Coast Starlight, seek Dolly out in the snack car and make some small talk with her. She’s an interesting person and needs someone to talk to. On the last leg of my winter journey, I spoke briefly with another interesting character, a former psychic reader. She wasn’t a true reader, but a former phone operator. She said she initially wanted to be a phone sex operator, but got talked into being a psychic. Claiming to have experienced deja vu was all it took for her to get hired as a qualified reader. I didn’t ask her to “”read”” me, but I watched her do a “”psychic reading”” on another passenger. She explained why she said what she said and it all seemed very logical, as she was trained to pick up on little hints from people and work her psychic magic from there. It was all very fascinating. The interesting people that I have met during my train and hostel travels are almost too numerous to count: the owner of an Internet company in Amsterdam, a widow whose husband was a big-time editor for a Toronto newspaper, a student from Hungary, a bartender from Scotland, and a man who, as a baby, was allegedly held by William Faulkner. Inevitably, the discussions would turn to cultural differences. I discussed music in the United States compared to music in Britain and the Netherlands. I explained several times to several people how our nation’s electoral college functions. I also learned a lot about the attitudes Canadians have about Americans. Apparently I don’t “”sound like an American.”” I wasn’t sure how to take that, but assumed it was a personal compliment from Canadians. These experiences have taught me the value of traveling alone and the value of alternate modes of travel. It seems that people who ride trains and sleep in hostels are of a different class than those who rush through airports and check into Hiltons. They are often working-class people, and I think that is what makes them interesting. They are not uppity or snobbish. I may travel by myself, but with this crowd, I will never be alone. ...

Capitalizing on Your Potential

When Muir junior Jacob Knapp arrived in Washington in January, he had mixed feelings about the experiences that lay ahead. Knapp, a participant in the UCDC program, was initially overwhelmed. Anja Scherer Guardian “”I didn’t know anyone else who was in the program, so I was a little nervous going in,”” Knapp said. “”But by the time it was over, our group had really bonded.”” Knapp is one of 24 students from UCSD who participated in the program winter quarter. The UCDC program was created nearly 10 years ago, with the purpose of giving UC students the opportunity to take courses and have internships while living in the district area. UCSD has been sending students to participate in this program for the past five years, and the program has grown considerably since its creation. In the past, participants of the program have resided at the Virginian apartments in Arlington, Va., but beginning this fall, students will live in the new University of California Washington Center, located in the heart of the city. The new 11-story building will house nearly 300 students each quarter, as well as several seminar rooms, conference rooms, an auditorium, a multi-purpose room, a computer lab and several classrooms. Additionally, the building will house the Office of Federal Governmental Relations and other administrative and research units of the University of California. The center will serve as the epicenter of the UCDC program, making it the largest nonlocal university in Washington. Along with the opening of the new center, there have recently been some changes to the local program headquarters. After five years of being centered in the political science department, the headquarters for the program has moved to the Career Services Center. Although the program will continue to be operated by the political science department, the promotion, recruitment, Web site, internship information and advising and application procedures will all be orchestrated by Career Services. Shannon Roberts, the UCDC internship coordinator, feels that the move will have a strong impact on the amount of publicity that the program receives at UCSD. “”In the past, the program was not promoted as much,”” Roberts said. “”But with the opening of the new center and the increase in the number of students we will be able to send every quarter, we can already see the program becoming increasingly popular among UCSD students.”” For UCSD students, the completion of this new facility will increase the number of students participating in the program each quarter. The location of the building is also convenient for students because it is in such close proximity to many governmental organizations and agencies. For Knapp, a political science major, the internship was a valuable learning experience. “”The UCDC program opened up my eyes to the East Coast lifestyle and how our government works,”” Knapp said. “”I’ve always been a California boy, but this trip made me want to go to law school on the East Coast.”” Applicants will assemble a file consisting of a cover sheet, application form, official transcript, letters of recommendation, resume and letter of intent to enroll. Students should then turn these materials in to the Career Services Center, where they will be given guidance on how to obtain an internship in the district. After the application deadline has passed, application files will then be sent to the political science department, where they will be reviewed by a panel of faculty members who represent many different academic departments at UCSD. The panel will review these files on the basis of GPA, class level and major. Although the program is quite selective, those involved in the application review process try to accept a diverse group of students each quarter. Traditionally, a large number of the students who have participated in the program have been political science majors, but the program directors emphasize the vast number of opportunities available to other majors. Professor Samuel Kernell, director of undergraduate studies at the UCSD political science department and director of the UCDC program at UCSD, encourages students from all majors to apply for the program. “”This is not just a political science program,”” Kernell said. “”There are dozens and dozens of internships in a variety of fields that are available to students, and we are very keen on students from the humanities and sciences applying to the UCDC program.”” The quarter-long program provides students the chance to spend time away from UCSD, have an internship, as well as earn regular grades and units for coursework completed while in the district. The cost of the program is comparable to quarterly fees at UCSD, but the cost of living in Washington is slightly higher than in San Diego. Student housing is fully furnished, and the cost is approximately $725 per month for rent. Muir senior Jen Levine, a sociology major, participated in the program last spring and advises students to take advantage of the opportunities that this program offers. “”I chose to participate because I didn’t want to leave UCSD for a long period of time, yet I thought I would be missing out if I didn’t try something new and different,”” Knott said. “”There are many advantages to the program, and if you participate, you will have a memorable experience and learn a lot.”” Students who enroll in the program divide their time between classes taught by UC faculty and an internship that relates to their career interest. At the end of the 10-week program, students are expected to produce an intensive research paper related to their internship experience. Students are able to choose from several different courses including art history, sociology, politics, public policy, media and economics to satisfy their elective requirement. Although the course requirements and research paper can be intimidating, most students feel that they benefit from the work they complete in the district. Knapp, who interned at the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, felt that researching and writing his paper, “”Federal Grand Jury Reform,”” was a valuable learning experience. “”The research paper was a lot of work, but I feel like it was worthwhile,”” Knapp said. “”D.C. has tons of resources available for students and the public at large. You just have to take advantage of them.”” Although UCDC students take courses while in Washington, the internship is the main component of the program. According to the UCDC internship coordinators, there are a number of internship opportunities relating to agriculture, science and environmental policy, arts, museums, arts administration, Congress, economic policy, elections, political parties, action groups, human services & social policy, international affairs, law and justice, and press and the media. Revelle senior Marjorie Knott, a political science major, spent last spring interning at the White House in the Office of Presidential Inquiries for the Department of Correspondence. She served as a supervisor, and enjoyed the many opportunities she was given while completing her internship. “”I had a lot of perks as an intern,”” Knott said. “”I went to State Arrivals, ushered speaking engagements for diplomats and special White House tours and helped coordinate Volunteer Appreciation Day and the Easter Egg Roll.”” The program was also a defining experience in Knott’s career. Her internship experience substantially changed her career goals. “”Being a political science major, I always figured that law school was the next step for me,”” Knott said. “”My internship in D.C. redirected my abilities and my passion, because working within the Correspondence Department helped me recognize that my favorite part of my political science studies was in the composition and presentation of material. I liked the public relations aspect of my degree, and as an intern for the ultimate medium of public relations for political affairs, let’s just say I found my niche.”” For other students, such as Knapp, the internship experience reinforced prior career goals. “”Down the road, I would like to become a federal judge, and by working at the District Court in D.C., I was able to interview and observe several judges and see what their daily routines entailed,”” Knapp said. “”I was able to observe cool trials including the Microsoft case, and my internship at the courthouse has intensified my desire to go to law school,”” he said. For students who want to pursue internships in Washington, the UCDC program provides the opportunity to work with some of the nation’s most prestigious organizations, while still taking UC- transferable courses and living in the nation’s capital. In addition, with the opening of the new center in the fall, students will be able to reside in the same place where they will be taking courses and completing their research projects. For Knott, the UCDC program was a life-changing experience. “”Words cannot describe the impact that this program had on my life,”” Knott said. “”This experience shaped the person that I am, and shaped the goals that I know seek.”” The deadline for the fall quarter program is May 7, and students wishing to apply for winter quarter can also turn in applications by this date. For more information visit the Career Services Center, or go to the UCDC Web site at http://www.ucdc.edu/. ...

Horoscopes

Aries (March 21-April 19) Early this week, Aries, an unusual flirtation may be distracting. For the next four days, new friends and colleagues will offer unexpected gestures of affection, trust or admiration. For some Aries natives, especially those born between 1954 and 1962, a new romance will now trigger workplace tensions. If so, wait for a calmer atmosphere to arrive: All will be well. After Friday, also watch for a fast announcement from a close relative. Highlighted are life plans, career goals and quick relocations. Taurus (April 20-May 20) Honest discussions will be an important theme this week, Taurus. Before Thursday, watch for loved ones to plan fresh social activities or family events. Ironically, Taurus, this new atmosphere of group acceptance may also create minor tensions between friends and relatives. Open communications will resolve all interpersonal problems, Taurus: Don’t avoid difficult subjects. Later this week, a decision in a key relationship may be necessary. Watch for small ultimatums and unusual romantic overtures. Gemini (May 21-June 21) Creativity and rare business contacts are on the agenda this week, Gem: Promising employment inroads will soon offer powerful rewards. After Tuesday, watch for increased paperwork or financial messages from authority figures. Many Geminis will soon explore fresh work outlets and business partnerships. Research will be key, Gem: Closely examine all possibilities. After Friday, complex romantic and social tensions will fade: Rest, pamper the body and enjoy new friendships. Cancer (June 22-July 22) Late Tuesday, a previously silent work official or manager may request help in a difficult project. Offer assistance, Cancer, but avoid publicly choosing sides between colleagues. Until key decisions are made co-workers and close friends will be protective of their own ideas. Play the diplomat — group dynamics will be delicate for the next eight days. After Wednesday, social invitations will quickly increase. Expect unique outdoor ideas and exciting group entertainment. Join in, Cancer: All is well. Leo (July 23-Aug. 22) New friendships and gentle romantic flirtations will be delightful before Wednesday, Leo: Expect others to be drawn to your confidence and unique social style. Some Leos may soon find it necessary to decide between two competing relationships. Take your time, Leo: At present, there is no need to adopt an impulsive pace in key relationships. After midweek, pay attention to financial decisions. Binding contracts may be temporarily misleading. Avoid complex choices, if at all possible. Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22) Over the next few days, Virgo, an old friend or forgotten lover may briefly reappear. Sentimental emotions and past memories may now be a prime theme in close relationships. Use this time to evaluate and improve present romantic or social relations, Virgo: Until late next week loved ones will continue to increase social demands and expand their ideas of commitment. After Tuesday, financial and employment news may be complicated. Before mid-May, expect delays or conflicted information. Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 23) Social relationships and new career contacts will now work in your favor, Libra. A recent period of confusing business information or indecision in close friendships is now ending. Before Wednesday, watch for both friends and longterm work partners to declare strong ambitions and renewed social interest. Some Librans, especially those born between 1954 and 1962, may also encounter a quick financial or property opportunity. Remain focused, Libra: Much is changing. Scorpio (Oct. 24-Nov. 21) Work ideas and new group opportunities are promising over the next few days, Scorp. Late Tuesday, watch for friends, partners or co-workers to introduce revised duties or shared team projects. Creativity and confident social communications will now bring powerful results, Scorp: Join in and let others hear your ideas. After Thursday, friends and relatives may request extra time and attention. Don’t disappoint, Scorp: Loved ones may now feel vulnerable or socially restless. Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21) Authority figures will now review your records, ideas and future potential, Sage. Over the next few days, expect subtle policy changes and unique opportunities. Some Sagittarians will now begin a six-week period of social exploration or revised job titles. Long-term educational programs may also be affected, Sage: Carefully review schedules, dates and overall plans. After Friday, a close friend or relative may need emotional advice: Family disappointments and daily stress are key issues. Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19) Romantic expectations are now changing. After midweek, expect loved ones to express intensely private emotions and a need for greater commitment. Single Capricorns will likely encounter a sharp increase in sensuality, romantic invitations and social optimism. Use this time to solidify relationships, improve intimacy and increase trust with loved ones. Before next week, watch for an unexpected flirtation. Get ready to draw attention, Cap: Potential mates have noticed your confidence. Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18) Long-term friendships will now provide added support and encouragement, Aquarius. Recent group or family disputes may now be draining. Let loved ones offer advice: In the coming weeks a new perspective will be extremely helpful. After Thursday, subtle family or romantic conflicts will be steadily resolved. Refuse to rely on past patterns or outdated behaviors for emotional direction, Aquarius: Yesterday’s impressions need to fade. Next week, social confidence returns: Remain patient. Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20) Before Wednesday, business is demanding, Pisces: Expect authority figures to rely heavily on your expertise, social advice or group timing. Show off your talents, Pisces, and expect positive recognition in return. Over the next six weeks many Pisceans will bring powerful work projects and new career dreams into their lives: Stay open to all creative ventures. After Friday, romantic flirtations will greatly intensify: Watch for loved ones and potential partners to be passionate, outgoing and socially delightful. If Your Birthday is this Week: Past relationships, outdated social obligations or old family history will be a subtle theme over the next nine weeks. Pay attention to minor attitude changes, vivid inner impressions or social awareness, Taurus: By late June, a powerful life lesson will dramatically increase your appreciation of intimacy, trust and long-term commitment. Much of this emerging self-awareness has been in the works for the last eight months, Taurus: Listen to your instincts and let others witness your new enthusiasm and life skills. ...

Society Is Handling the Recent School Shootings the Wrong Way

OK, so now I’m pissed. I’ve been holding back on this issue for a while now, but I can’t stand it anymore. Americans have turned into a bunch of thin-skinned, lawsuit-happy pansies who take a joke about as well as Steven Segal acts (I know he can kick some ass, but his stone-faced monotony really bugs the shit out of me sometimes). What am I talking about? I’ll tell ya. I’m talking about not being able to talk to people without having to bite my tongue because I’m worried that I might offend them in some way and get sued. It’s utterly ridiculous. It’s getting to be so bad that you can’t turn on the television or read a newspaper without hearing about some lawsuit that stemmed from people who didn’t get their way. The most recent of these problems is the increased violence on school campuses. The motives behind the shootings may differ, but their origins remain the same. They all involved kids who didn’t get what they wanted, so they lashed out violently. At both Columbine and Santana High School, the kids were bullied so much that they struck back with force in an effort to deal with their own discomfort. In the Granite Hills shooting, the student was rejected from the Navy and blamed it on an administrator at the high school. If you look closely, these kids are nothing but a product of their environments. I’m not talking about the music they listen to, the video games they play or the movies they watch. I’m talking about the way that our society has taught them to think. Think about it. From birth, people are trained to think that they have certain rights that nobody can take away. It’s the typical American mindset that we have all been sucked into. We are taught that anyone who makes us feel uneasy is infringing on our rights and that action can, and should, be taken. These kids saw people being sued for writing or saying something that made another person feel badly. They saw people even going to jail for it. In school, they saw other kids getting detention for calling another child a bad name. They were exposed to this for their entire lives. Their brains were trained to think that it was an unquestionable system of punishment for infringing upon others’ “”right to feel good about themselves.”” That is why they were so outraged when they encountered something that made them feel badly and nothing was done about it. There were other students, and in one case even the Navy, who made these kids feel bad about themselves. When they saw that the system of crime and punishment that they had been trained to believe in and follow blindly was not bringing them justice, they decided to take justice into their own hands. I am by no means trying to justify what these kids did. I personally think that they should be tried as adults and spend the rest of their lives in jail, but that’s another rant altogether. All that I am saying is that we, as a society, need to take some responsibility for what occurred. I concede that, in the end, it was those kids who ultimately made the decision to lash out, but we can’t absolve ourselves of all blame. We can’t simply blame it on personal lifestyles just so we can sleep better at night. If we do that, then we are simply leaving the door wide open for similar events to take place in the future. So what is it that we’ve done in an effort to prevent these atrocities from happening in the future? For starters, we’ve blamed it on the entertainment industry. We’ve said that it’s Eminem’s and Marilyn Manson’s music that makes kids violent. We’ve said that violent video games give kids bad ideas. We’ve even said that movies provoke kids to become more violent. We’ve also developed stricter rules for kids who pick on other children. In many schools, kids can now be suspended for name calling. People are saying that we have to hold the bullies just as responsible for the crimes as the people who commit them. What is this actually doing, though? This is removing blame from the students themselves and feeding right back into the system of punishing people for “”being mean.”” By blaming violence on factors such as the students’ lifestyles, we take blame away from the ones who actually made the decision to become violent. It is a way to bury the real problems behind the shootings and come up with a quick, convenient cause that absolves the rest of society from blame. This also feeds right back into the mindset that provoked the students to lash out in the first place. It is telling them that the violence they inflict is the bullies’ fault for having called them names. It is not their fault. By punishing the bully as well, society is, in a sense, condoning the actions of the gunmen. While this “”solution”” to the problem does not go to the extreme to which the boys went, it certainly reaffirms their belief that the bullies should be punished for calling them names. Then how are we going to solve the problem, you ask? I would say that the answer is simpler than you would think (and simpler than a lot of the “”experts”” trying to come up with a solution would think). I say that we need to stop perpetuating this misguided belief that most Americans have about their “”right to happiness.”” Nowhere in the Constitution of this great land does it say anything about a right to happiness. There are many other rights (including a right to privacy that has mysteriously been invented) that are guaranteed, but the right to happiness is not one of them. Whether we would like to believe it, we must accept that we live in the real world. Things are not always going to go our way. It is a basic fact of life. If we truly wanted our children to be happy, we would stop coddling them and feeding them the monstrous lie that their lives are going to be nothing but roses. I can understand that, as a parent, somebody would not want to see their child suffer, but it’s unrealistic to expect otherwise. If somebody really wanted to help kids, he would let them know from a young age how the world works. When the child comes home from school crying, parents should resist the instinct to call both the other child’s parents and the school to demand “”justice,”” and should instead talk to the child about the incident. Simply explaining to a child that those types of things are, unfortunately, going to happen in the real world would do them more good than simply telling them that the offending child will be punished. Parents can instill in their children from a young age the idea that their opinions of themselves are the only ones that truly matter. If a child knows this and believes in it as blindly as he currently believes in our system of “”justice,”” then shootings such as those at Columbine, Santana and Granite Hills can be prevented. A child who is secure with himself and has high self-esteem will not lash out just because some moron calls him a “”loser”” or a “”queer.”” Those types of things simply wouldn’t happen. You can ask any of those “”experts,”” and I guarantee that they will agree with that statement. After you finish this article, do yourself a favor. Take a look around you. Look at the people who walk by you. How much better off would we all be if you honestly didn’t care what they said about you? How much better off would we be if the person you see sitting by himself honestly didn’t care about what some jerk just said to him? I think that we’d be better off. But then again, maybe that’s just me. ...

Small-town Girl in Hollywood

Even from the La Valencia Hotel in Del Mar, in a telephone interview last Wednesday, Adriana Trigiani presented the image of an unflappable, yet easy going Italian-American southerner who has worked hard and enjoys the confidence of knowing she is successful. Photo Courtesy of Anthony Parmelee And she should. Her eclectic resume is one that any writer/producer/director would be proud of. At the age of 16, she got a job as a reporter at WNVA radio in Norton, Va., and this began her diversified career through American media. As a student at Notre Dame/Saint Mary’s in the mid-eighties, Trigiani was founder of The Outcasts, “”a fringe, all-girl comedy troupe,”” which she recast when she moved to New York after graduating with a degree from the theater program. When she reached New York, she worked a number of odd jobs, including working as a temp, but soon found an audience for her work and got a television agent. At this time she began working as a writer for the television show, “”A Different World,”” starring Kadeem Hardison and Jasmine Guy. Before long, however, Trigiani was working as both a writer and producer for the hit television show “”The Cosby Show.”” Since then, she has written numerous award-winning plays that have been shown around the country. Additionally, her film documentary, “”Queens of the Bigtime,”” a full-length feature that focuses on her family in Roseto, Pa., won national and international acclaim. The list goes on. Her first book, “”Big Stone Gap,”” a fictional novel depicting a strong Southern woman that was published just last year, is a national bestseller. Now, in the afterglow of receiving recognition for the book that Whoopi Goldberg calls, “”one of my all time favorite novels … unforgettable,”” she is now directing and writing the script for the movie that is being made from “”Big Stone Gap.”” The book’s sequel, “”Big Cherry Holler,”” is due out in May. Like the main character of her book, Ave Maria Mulligan, Trigiani grew up in the Southern town of Big Stone Gap, Va., in the ’70s. Mulligan, like Trigiani, loved the mountains, books and the theater, but while Trigiani left to build her career in New York City, Mulligan stayed in Big Stone Gap. It is there that Mulligan examines the complexities of life and human interaction to discover how unexpected circumstances in life make things more interesting. But to leave it at that is too simple a description. “”Big Stone Gap”” is “”simply”” written the way that Ernest Hemmingway’s “”Old Man and the Sea”” was “”simply”” written — drawing out the complexities of human emotion with simple story telling. “”People Magazine”” called the book “”Delightfully quirky, chock full of engaging oddball characters and unexpected plot twists,”” and it is. However, this is a vast oversimplification of the remarkably complex plethora of human emotions that Trigiani brilliantly explores through her myriad of characters. The big ideas that are contained in that simple language, and in the small town, contain universal appeal for readers. According to Trigiani, her main character exemplifies the struggle women face who are trying to balance a desire for success and independence with the ability to love and be loved. Mulligan is a woman in her mid-thirties living in Big Stone Gap in 1978. An avid reader, her very favorite book is on Chinese face reading, a practice where facial characteristics reveal the contents of one’s soul. According to Mulligan’s facial characteristics, something important and life changing is to take place during her 35th year. It is the course of this year and the changes that take place that Trigiani depicts for her readers. Another more bitter character in Trigiani’s book is Fleeta Mullins, her assistant at the pharmacy. Mulligan is an optimist, despite her resolution toward a spinster lifestyle, and Mullins provides a perfect counter balance to Mulligan’s attitude. Mulligan is encouraging one of the younger citizens of the town to discard superficial beauty to locate beauty within. Mullins feels that this is a hopeless endeavor, and tells Mulligan so. “”Honey, there’s potential, and then there’s bullshit dreaming.”” says Mullins. “”I think you got a case of the bullshit dreams, if you know what I mean.”” According to Trigiani, Mullins is a character who is likable, but who is also a chain smoking, Diet Coke drinking, bitter old woman, whose thoughts should be discarded as pessimistic and discouraging. Mulligan is a self-proclaimed spinster in the small town of Big Stone Gap, serving as the town pharmacist and as a volunteer ambulence driver for the Rescue Squad. She is also the director of the town theater troupe. Her diverse interests and self-sufficiency disguise her fear of commitment to a relationship that would make her vulnerable to hurt, and reveal to the world that she does need to be loved. During the course of the year, the changes predicted by her Chinese face-reading philosophy do take place, and they help Mulligan to discover family secrets and the secrets within herself that have hindered her ability to be a part of a successful relationship. “”I wouldn’t know what to do with a man,”” says Mulligan. “”Hook him? Serve him? Then pray he never leaves? How do you do it without dying? How?”” Although she is happily married, Mulligan’s struggle may have been a reflection of Trigiani’s own life. In her interview, Trigiani said that women often have to figure out how they can balance success with personal happiness, and Mulligan exemplifies this internal emotional struggle. “”Women have to be independent, and we also have to be emotionally available,”” Trigiani said. As a strong and successful woman, Trigiani admits that gender has always played a factor in her life. However, she was lucky to receive the support from her family that she needed to succeed. She says that, although Italians are known for patriarchal attitudes toward women, she was fortunate enough to always have powerful female role models. “”I never had the sense that I couldn’t do something because I was a girl,”” Trigiani said. “”Both of my grandmothers owned their own businesses, and my mother always encouraged me.”” Another part of her success seems to come from her love for what she does. While growing up in Big Stone Gap, she was a prolific writer. She continued her love for writing in college, where she wrote numerous plays that were all well-received. “”I was always writing,”” Trigiani said. “”Even in a small coal-mining town, when I didn’t know there were jobs for what I did.”” Trigiani admits that success is sometimes difficult, but says that it is obtainable if you are able to manage it. “”If you have it and claim it, it is yours,”” she said. In the sequel, “”Big Cherry Holler,”” Mulligan, again the main character, will re-examine her life to try to figure out why, after truly discovering herself in the first book, she keeps making the same mistakes. Trigiani describes the new book as full of plot twists that the reader never could or would have expected in the first book. According to Trigiani, “”You’ll be blown away.”” Trigiani, we already are. ...

Horoscopes

Aries (March 21-April 19) Before midweek, Aries, watch for a key official to introduce unexpected financial information: Canceled loans and temporary restrictions are accented. Although news may be negative, Aries, past employment or money mistakes can now be easily transformed into sound business decisions. Pay special attention to new property options, government contracts or lucrative, short-term projects. After Thursday, social relations will be delicate: Expect increased gossip and fast romantic speculation. Taurus (April 20-May 20) Private love affairs or hidden loyalties between friends may now be subtly revealed, Taurus. Over the next few days, romantic flirtations will be unmistakable: Watch co-workers and officials for small indications of emotional change. Some Taureans will also enter into a highly passionate relationship. Remain open, Taurus: New relationships will be temporary but seductive and rewarding. Early next week financial restrictions are lifted, Taurus: Expect slow, steady changes. Gemini (May 21-June 21) Financial speculations and new contracts will work in your favor this week, Gem. Early Wednesday, watch for a key official or government agency to offer unique opportunities in promotions, media, advertising or management. Thoroughly research all major proposals, however, before mid-May: Employment facts, money promises or public records may be temporarily misleading. After Friday, expect a sudden burst of physical energy: Health, fitness and social optimism are now on the rise. Cancer (June 22-July 22) Love relationships will be satisfying this week, Cancer: Early Tuesday, expect loved ones to leave behind past social anxieties or romantic doubts. Family differences and minor disagreements will no longer create a wall of silence, Cancer: Openly express your ideas, opinions or needs and watch for important emotional breakthroughs. After Thursday, small financial decisions may be required. Key issues involve short term investments, property management, repairs or renovations: Stay focused. Leo (July 23-Aug. 22) Family and close social relationships will now enter a brief but intense period of past reflection or confrontation. No serious or long-lasting influences can be expected here, Leo, but do watch for loved ones to openly discuss recent events, past social loyalties or yesterday’s decisions. Be attentive, Leo: Others may now need your dedication and support. After Thursday, news from a distant relative will be pleasing: Travel plans, home renovations or large purchases are indicated. Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22) Late Tuesday, Virgo, a work announcement or business proposal may initiate a lengthy period of expansion and revised career ambitions. Key areas of concern are corporate permissions, shared contracts and changed job titles. Tuesday through Friday, watch financial records and business tactics closely for valuable clues. Some Virgos, especially those born in August, may find that the complex workplace politics of the last four months now create unexpected opportunities: Stay alert. Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 23) Quick messages and new instructions may soon cause subtle but important changes in working relationships, Libra: Early Wednesday, expect key officials or work partners to openly discuss short-term plans or revised policies. Your role may be more influential than is apparent, Libra: At present, group success depends heavily on your public confidence and leadership abilities. Later this week, social dynamics are also difficult: Expect close friends to be temporarily moody or unresponsive. Scorpio (Oct. 24-Nov. 21) Close friends and potential lovers will now respond warmly to new proposals, Scorp. Provide obvious invitations over the next few days and expect honest, decisive answers. Before next week, loved ones will be receptive to your social ideas, group suggestions and romantic style. After Friday, expect friends or relatives to openly speculate about recent romantic triangles or ongoing social mistakes. Remain detached, Scorp: The loyalties of others may now be complicated by outdated social beliefs. Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21) Early this week, Sage, a loved one may require extra support or encouragement: Before Thursday, expect family conflicts or romantic disagreements to be highly distracting. Remain cautious, Sage: Over the next 12 days, friends and lovers will be mildly dramatic and sensitive to new social or romantic information. After Friday, dreams, insights and glimpses into the future will be a strong theme: Listen carefully to sudden hunches and quick social impressions. Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19) Social misunderstandings and romantic ethics may soon become an intense topic of conversation, Cap. For the next three days, loved ones will be introspective, socially withdrawn and doubtful. Respond quickly to all questions or statements, Sage: Before Wednesday, loved ones will need your guidance and support. After Thursday, family invitations and home proposals will be rewarding: Plan for unexpected social gatherings and unique family events. Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18) Clearly state your feelings and needs in social or family relationships this week, Aquarius. Complex changes or recent time schedule adjustments may soon cause unnecessary confusion. Loved ones will be unable to resolve group disagreements without your input, Aquarius: Be supportive. After Wednesday, review recently strained workplace relations. New job roles or subtle emotional changes between co-workers may soon require attention: Gather reliable information before taking action. Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20) Rekindled friendships and love affairs will bring positive rewards early this week, Pisces. After a brief period of miscommunications, mutual respect and affection can now be re-established. Contact distant friends or lovers, Pisces, and make new social arrangements: All is well. After Tuesday, avoid excess spending: Before next week, money records and paperwork may require special attention. Stay focused on long-term purchases, Pisces: Saving and family goals should now be a top priority. If Your Birthday is this Week: Older relatives or long-term family friends may soon request more of your time, attention and dedication. Over the next three months watch for a steady increase in family discussions, property decisions and creative home solutions. Living arrangements and shared responsibilities will be an ongoing theme before mid-August: Find positive ways to bring greater comfort and security to loved ones. Later this year romantic relations will become serious, dedicated and powerfully rewarding: Before early November watch for important romantic proposals and shared daily or social commitments. ...

The Recent Stock Market Roller Coaster is New to Unjaded College Investors

It is no epiphany that money is tight for college students. The high sales of Natural Ice at the Sav-On near campus can attest to that. I personally have a change stash in my desk that I delve into on Sundays in an attempt to purchase the most 39-cent cheeseburgers that I can afford. Because of this shortage of funds, students scramble to find money from any source possible. Some people subject themselves to scientific testing for a few extra dollars. Many of us have jobs to pay for extraneous items that financial aid and Mom and Dad don’t pay for. Another popular place to try and find a little cash, at least in the last couple of years, has been the stock market. These days are now over. I’ll admit it. Since I was a junior in high school, I have invested small to moderate amounts of money in the stock market, and I know that I am not alone. I figured, as I am sure that many of you did, that the market keeps going up and there is next to no risk to being in the market, especially the technology industries, where price per share ceilings didn’t seem to exist. We all made a stupid move, but it wasn’t entirely our fault. We were born in exactly the range of time that put us in our late teens and early twenties, when the market was flying to its highest levels. We were led to believe that the rules of economics didn’t apply to us; that prices of stock shares no longer had anything to do with earnings and that the values of Internet companies could continuously rise, even without a product or anything resembling a profit. It was a new economy with new rules, and we were sure that we were going to benefit from it. We were oh-so-wrong. What caused this misconception that sent buyers into a frenzy? Ironically enough, I would say that the blame can most correctly be placed in the laps of the buyers themselves. Cheap computer trading on Web sites such as E-Trade has made other brokerage houses lower their per-trade prices. All of this has made entering the stock market more accessible to many people over the last few years. For most of you, this is not new information. What most people don’t understand, however, is the new dynamic that this introduces into the realm of stock trading. With more novice investors in the market trying to make a quick buck, two things happen. First of all, variances of stock prices begin to go way up. This is simply because of the fact that more people in the market means more capital in the market, which in turn brings the possibility of bigger swings. Secondly, more novice investors means that the mob-like reactions to certain phenomena have an even greater effect on prices of stocks. This is my theory, and theories need to be tested with empirical evidence, so let’s take a look at the numbers. It is easy to see that the variances in the prices of the stock exchanges have gone up significantly over the past few years. As little as five years ago, a 20-point move on the NASDAQ would be considered a volatile day. Now we don’t even flinch unless it moves at least 100 points. For evidence of the mob-like activity I spoke of above, all you need to do is look at the dot-com craze that is just now coming to an end. By all the laws of economics, there was no reason that these companies had any business being priced so high. Stock shares are simply claims to the future earnings of companies, and most of these companies had never made a profit. How the craze probably began was with one investor willing to take a chance that he would eventually make a profit, then people began to follow him. From there, novice investors saw the prices of these stocks continue to rise, so they decided to buy for themselves. When professional investors realized that people were willing to pay almost any price for these stocks, they decided to buy and sell later when the price would inevitably be higher. Unfortunately, we all know how this story ends. As prices began to fall, novice investors got scared, mostly because they had never experienced that before, and prices fell more until they got to the depressed and depressing levels that they are at now. We bet on the laws of economics being suspended, and they were, but not for long enough. Is there any good news to this sad series of events? Fortunately, there is. First of all, there is a lesson to be learned. That lesson is that it is probably better to go get your brain hooked up to electrodes for spending money than to venture into the stock market. There is a reason that every investor who knows what he is doing suggests holding assets for the long term and not using any money in the market that you will need any time soon. I think over the past couple of months we have been taught a lesson as to why these investors have this strategy. The better news, for people that have disposable money right now, is that the large variances brought on by novice investors many times lead to a market where stocks are priced below where they should be. Are we in one of these times now? Possibly, and if we aren’t yet, I can almost guarantee that we will be soon. This sets up a great opportunity for people to make a killing in the market. So if you have extra cash, by all means go for it. As for me, I think I will stick to digging though my change drawer. ...

Looking For a Place to Call Home

The annual housing crunch is back and in full force as hoards of UCSD students find themselves in need of housing. Demand for off-campus housing is especially high this year with students no longer guaranteed housing for their sophomore year. Jennifer Myer Guardian What does that mean to students looking for housing? According to Justin Taylor, a leasing specialist at The Villas of Renaissance, it means that students need to start house hunting immediately. “”[The students] need to start looking now,”” Taylor said. “”We already have a waiting list for housing in September. It is only going to get busier.”” This can be a sobering realization for students who have yet to begin their quests for housing, but before huddling in a corner and crying about visions of whoring themselves on a street corner for shelter, they should take comfort in the fact that there is help available for the search. Beginning There are several different ways that one can go about finding available apartments. One means is the Off-Campus Housing office, located in the Eucalyptus Lounge in the Student Center. At the office, students can find a plethora of information regarding available housing off campus, including openings, roommates and other possibilities. Another popular method is to drive around town and look into complexes that seem appealing. While this may take more time than some other methods, it allows students to get acquainted with the areas surrounding their potential dwellings by driving around them for the day. For those students who prefer to find housing on their own, but want to have some direction, they can find a wealth of information on the Web or in the various free housing magazines that are available at the entrances of most area supermarkets. These allow students to decide which communities they would like to visit before they decide to drive aimlessly through the city. Choosing Ruben James, a leasing representative from Costa Verde Village, recommends looking at several different places until you find one that suits you. “”The best thing to do is to just shop around and take a look at what the different places have to offer,”” James said. “”You should probably choose three to five communities that you really like.”” Once you find those communities, both Taylor and James recommend getting on wait lists. “”Students should definitely take advantage of wait lists at properties that offer them,”” James said. “”They are a great way to secure some sort of availability for an apartment.”” As is the case with people, not all wait lists are created equal. Most complexes charge a completely refundable fee for getting on their wait list. This fee can range anywhere from $20 to $200. A few places, such as The Villas of Renaissance, even take credit cards for the deposit. Costa Verde Village is one of the few area properties that has no wait list. This is due to the fact that the complex is opening up a new building and is leasing those rooms out now. For the most part, people get on wait lists and specify a certain month that they would like to move in. Since most places remain at capacity throughout the year, or close to it, they do not know when they will have openings until tenants give their 30-day notice to move out. At that point, the people on wait lists are contacted and offered the opening. If they like it, then it is theirs. If they don’t, or if they have another apartment already, then the wait list deposit is refunded. Prices While there are places out there for just about any price range, students should be realistic about what they expect to pay in La Jolla. Unless you’re willing to live in a roach motel, you should expect to pay somewhere between $1,100 and $1,500 for a cozy two-bedroom apartment. Before making a decision purely on price, students should also consider what they are getting for their money. For example, while the cheapest two-bedroom apartment at The Villas of Renaissance costs $1,585, there are several benefits that come with living in that community. The Villas of Renaissance offers a fitness center with free weights, an aerobics room, a sauna, four pools, four Jacuzzis and several activities ranging from movies to dances, of which are all included in the rent. “”We are a very activities-based community,”” said Taylor. “”We really like to keep things interesting for the residents.”” Some complexes also include some, or all, utilities in the rental price, something that can be very valuable with the current high prices of water and electricity. In contrast to those high prices, Costa Verde Village offers a two-bedroom and two-bath model for a mere $1,350. Couple that price with a high success rate of people getting housing, and it is not surprising that Costa Verde Village has become one of the more popular communities for UCSD students. Of course, those are La Jolla prices for La Jolla apartments. If you want to save money, there is always the option of going to neighboring areas for cheaper housing. Pacific Beach, Clairemont, Mira Mesa and Del Mar are all communities that have benefited from college students seeking inexpensive housing. Signing the Lease There are several different leasing options available to students. Most places offer leases ranging from month-to-month to full-year leases. For students, there may be nine-month leases that run from September to June, perfect for the school year. Co-signers may be necessary to sign the lease at some apartments, as some leases can require the renter to put down two or even three times the monthly rental price. This is why many college students have their parents co-sign for their apartments. ...