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Smriti Tayal, 17, is from Roswell High School in Roswell, Georgia. She participated in the AD/PR track.

Spencer Bullard, 18, is from Appling County High School in Baxly, Georgia. He participated in the AD/PR track.

Talyn Burgess-Jimene, 17, is from Memorial Senior High School in Houston, Texas. She participated in the AD/PR track.

Paige Cotter, 16, is from Trinity Christian Academy in Dallas, Texas. She participated in the AD/PR track.

Sydney Smith, 16, is from St. Pius X Catholic High School in Lawrenceville, Georgia. She participated in the Journalism Broadcast track.

Jade Kelley, 17, is from Palm Beach Gardens High School in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. She participated in the Journalism Broadcast track.

Chloe Fowler, 17, is from Kipp Atlanta Collegiate in Atlanta, Georgia. She participated in the Journalism Broadcast track.

Chloe Franklin, 17, is from Lake Point Academy in Rock Hill, South Carolina. She participated in the Journalism Broadcast track.

Bridget Frame, 17, is from Roswell High School in Roswell, Georgia. She participated in the Journalism Website track.

Elyssa Abbott, 16, is from North Cobb High School in Kennesaw, Georgia. She participated in the Journalism Broadcast track.

James MacElroy, 17, is from Dunwoody High School in Dunwoody, Georgia. He participated in the Entertainment track.

Camryn Bryant, 16, is from Cambridge High School in Milton, Georgia. She participated in the Entertainment track.

Baylee Brown, 17, is from Gordon Lee Memorial High School in Chickamauga, Georgia. He participated in the Entertainment track.

Fernando Zarate, 17, is from Berkmar High School in Lilburn, Georgia. He participated in the Entertainment track.

Andrew Neville, 17, is from Pace Academy in Atlanta, Georgia. He participated in the Journalism Broadcast track.

Paul Miller, 17, is from Oak Mountain High School in Birmingham, Alabama. He participated in the Journalism Broadcast track.

Zamariah Strozier, 15, is from Kipp Atlanta Collegiate in Atlanta, Georgia. She participated in the Journalism Broadcast track.

Colin Wright, 17, is from Fenwick High School in Oak Park, Illinois. He participated in the Journalism Broadcast track.

Sarah DeBruhl, 18, is from Southwest Dekalb High School in Decatur, Georgia. She participated in the Journalism Broadcast track.

Chiqui Benton, 17, is from Kipp Atlanta Collegiate in Atlanta, Georgia. She participated in the Journalism Broadcast track.

Alexandra Oyon, 17, is from Walton High School in Marietta, Georgia. She participated in the Journalism Broadcast track.

Amber Jones, 17, is from Nolensville High School in Nolensville, Tennessee. She participated in the Journalism Broadcast track.

Jack Sloane, 17, is from Marietta High School in Marietta, Georgia. He participated in the Entertainment track.

Jackson Fryburger, 17, is from Woodward Academy in Atlanta, Georgia. He participated in the Entertainment track.

AJ Dodd, 16, is from Kennesaw Mountain High School in Kennesaw, Georgia. He participated in the Entertainment track.

Izzy Avalos, 17, is from Winder Barrow High School in Winder, Georgia. She participated in the AD/PR track.


Ben Otten, 18, is from Alexander High School in Douglasville, Georgia. He participated in the Entertainment track.

Nena Alexander, 17, is from Peachtree Ridge High School in Suwanee, Georgia. She participated in the Entertainment track.

Maggie Hynes, 16, is from Marist High School in Oak Lawn, Illinois. She participated in the AD/PR track.

Scarlett Reicher, 17, is from Campolindo High School in Lafayette, California. She participated in the AD/PR track.

Rachel McBride, 15, is from North Clayton High School in College Park, Georgia. She participated in the AD/PR track.

Kelsey Henderson, 17, is from Westlake High School in East Point, Georgia. She participated in the Entertainment track.

Sarah Thaman, 16, is from Kirkwood High School in Kirkwood, Missouri. She participated in the AD/PR track.

Zoe Flores, 17, is from Parkview High School in Stone Mountain, Georgia. She participated in the AD/PR track.

Hunter Rensink, 17, is from Northgate High School in Sharpsburg, Georgia. He participated in the Entertainment track.

Caylee Cicero, 17, is from Starr’s Mill High School in Tyrone, Georgia. She participated in the AD/PR track.


Maia Eaton, 17, is from Our Lady of Mercy Catholic High School in Douglasville, Georgia. She participated in the Entertainment track.

Nikkia Bell, 16, is from Cedar Shoals High School in Athens, Georgia. She participated in the Journalism Website track.

Charlotte Luke, 16, is from Athens Academy in Athens, Georgia. She participated in the Journalism Website track.

Erin Stafford, 17, is from Paducah Tilghman High School in Paducah, Kentucky. She participated in the Journalism Website track.

Aryanna Russell, 15, is from Pebblebrook High School in Mableton, Georgia. She participated in the Journalism Website track.

Christian Galoppe, 15, is from Lassiter High School in Marietta, Georgia. He participated in the AD/PR track.

Summer Sampson, 17, is homeschooled in Birmingham, Alabama. She participated in the AD/PR track.

Mira Eashwaran, 15, is from Milton High School in Milton, Georgia. She participated in the Journalism Website track.

Anna Hicks, 16, is from Denmark High School in Alpharetta, Georgia. She participated in the Journalism Website track.

Sarah Clifton, 17, is from St. Scholastica Academy in Covington, Louisiana. She participated in the Journalism Website track.

Nate Walker, 17, is from Fitzgerald High School in Fitzgerald, Georgia. He participated in the Journalism Website track.

Jenna Lo, 17, is from George Walton Academy in Monroe, Georgia. She participated in the Journalism Website track.

Noah Monroe, 17, is from Concord High School in Concord, North Carolina. He participated in the Journalism Website track.

Jordan Owens, 17, is from Starr’s Mill High School in Fayetteville, Georgia. She participated in the Journalism Website track.

Sophie Ward, 17, is from Hanover High School in Ashland, Virginia. She participated in the Journalism Website track.

Lily Jorgensen, 17, is from Denver East High School in Denver, Colorado. She participated in the AD/PR track.

Sarah Thaman, 16, is from Kirkwood High School in Kirkwood, Missouri. She particpated in the AD/PR track.

Jackson Stone, 16, is from McIntosh High School in Peachtree City, Georgia. He participated in the Journalism Website track.

Gillian Brown, 16, is from James Madison High School in San Diego, California. She participated in the Journalism Broadcast track.

Jayla Brown, 17, is from The Galaway School in Mableton, Georgia. She participated in the Journalism Broadcast track.

Michael Howard, 17,  is from Chapel Hill High School in Douglasville, Georgia. He participated in the Journalism Broadcast track.


Food Waste on College Campuses

Features, News

By Elyssa Abbott

One in six Americans are unsure where their next meal will come from, even though 40% of food prepared never even touches the plate.

“Certainly, the statistics on waste and food insecurity are staggering and it is natural to wonder why one issue [waste] isn’t being used to address the other [hunger],” said Brenna Ellison, associate professor in Agriculture and Consumer Economics at the University of Illinois. “Even though there is legislation to protect organizations who donate uneaten food in good faith, many are still concerned that they could be held liable if someone were to get sick from the donated food. One way to increase benefits to donating organizations would be to provide some sort of tax incentives where they would be willing to incur the costs of redistributing food.”

According to HuffPost, 130 billion pounds of food are discarded each year. U.S. colleges alone waste 22 million pounds of food per year. Due to the popular buffet style found on college campuses, food waste is overwhelmingly high. In addition to the “all-you-care-to-eat” dining approach the University of Georgia and schools around the country follow, the conveyor belt designed to transport dishes back to the kitchen allows students to not feel responsible for the waste they created. A common characteristic of college students is saving the most amount of money possible, which leads to purchasing groceries in bulk. Often times, the food will spoil before eaten.

In American colleges, a meal plan that typically includes five meals a week can cost anywhere from $720-$1850 for a single semester. Students understand that this is pricey and will fill multiple plates of food to receive the full value out of their meal plan investment. As imagined, the wide array of options found in dining halls skews perception to overestimate how much they can actually eat. After paper, food waste is the second largest contributor to waste due to the carelessness of college dining hall tactics.

The 22 million pounds of food colleges waste each year also includes food that never touches the plate. Dining hall food managers have the incredibly difficult job of estimating how many students will visit the dining hall that particular day, as well as determining the amount of food each will eat. Different foods and genres will be eaten more than others, so this task provides a challenge. Colleges across the country have begun implementing programs and different approaches to college dining.

The University of Georgia is one of the few schools that have switched to, “tray-less,” dining halls. This cuts down on the amount of plates a single student can carry. Still, colleges often use the “all-you-care-to-eat” (AYCTE) aspect to their advantage when recruiting.

“However, an a la carte or pay by weight pricing system would most likely result in less waste as students now have a financial incentive to think more carefully about the foods they select and waste,” Ellison said. “Other ways dining halls could reduce waste could be by using different serviceware (e.g., smaller plates, smaller scoops); offering samples; or pre-portioning items (instead of self-service). Each potential change has its own associated costs, though, which have to be considered. For example, offering samples may reduce food waste but could increase packaging waste (extra sample cups/silverware) or water use (if sample dishes are used).”

Simple solutions may be the most efficient way to overcome drastic food waste. A 2011 study with 600 university student participants found that more than 57 grams of food were wasted per student. After researchers issued a message to the students about food waste, it decreased by 15 percent. Posting signs in the dining halls could be an easy fix to diminish food waste on campus. Dining halls choosing to reduce portion sizes or reuse untouched leftovers are possibilities, but come with liability risk and controversy. At Harvey Mudd College in Claremont, California, resident halls have received solar-powered food composters to accommodate those that choose to grocery shop. The University of California, Davis, has started a student led program that collects near 2,000 pounds a week in carrot peels and coffee grounds from the school’s waste to compost the items into a material donated to community gardens. Food Recovery Network, a well-known student driven program at the University of Maryland, recovered 30,000 meals compiled of untouched leftovers in their first active year. The meals were given out around the D.C. area, a community where one in seven households struggle with hunger.

The immense amount of waste that comes from college campuses, communities that receive recognition for cutting-edge innovations and renowned studies, should outrage people. Colleges have the resources to fix this problem and improve hunger rates in the U.S., as well as elsewhere. Typical buffet style dining halls serve as a detriment to those that struggle with hunger, simply because loading an unnecessary amount of food onto a plate   appeals to 18 year olds when searching for higher education.

In a 2013 article with Canadian Broadcasting Corporation , José Graziano da Silva, director of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, said a solution has to happen.“We simply cannot allow one-third of all the food we produce to go to waste or be lost because of inappropriate practices, when 870 million people go hungry every day.”

Seoul to Athens

Features

By Elyssa Abbott

Originating from Seoul, South Korea, Solyee Kim has taken her education all across the world, from Germany to Georgia.

After receiving her undergraduate degree in public relations at Chung-Ang University in Seoul, South Korea, Kim landed in Athens in 2014 for graduate school. Her husband taught English in Seoul, and eventually wanted to move back to his roots in Athens. Coincidentally, Kim discovered the University Georgia’s renowned public relations program.

“I thought Georgia was extremely bucolic and green. For me, Athens and Atlanta seemed small to me, which was a new experience,” Solyee Kim said.

Coming from the busy, high-rise lifestyle of Seoul, Kim recalls her very first time seeing the full blue sky without a skyscraper in sight in Georgia. She recognizes the difference between the prominence of public transportation in Athens compared to Seoul, and misses not having to drive everywhere. Kim highlights the difficulties of adjusting to a city that shuts down around 8 p.m. from somewhere that is busy 24/7.

Adjusting to a new environment is one of the many challenges international students face. “Each student’s journey is different, however, international students in general will experience culture shock at some point during their first months on campus,” said Justin Jeffery, director of International Student Life at the University of Georgia. “These students are adjusting to a new cultural setting, a new academic environment, new foods, sometimes a different climate, and doing so while learning and interacting in a language that is most likely not their first language – all while being hundreds of miles away from family and friends. However, international students are incredibly resilient and do a fantastic job adjusting to and thriving at UGA.”

Although she misses Seoul and the friends and family that are far from her, Kim adores the rewarding nature found in Georgia. Luckily, Kim finds herself back in South Korea at least twice a year.

Solyee Kim has taken her interests around the globe, from studying German in Germany for a year and a half to researching global development with the United Nations in New York City for several months. New York was where she began tiring of the big city life.

“When I started in the Southern culture, I did not expect myself to be friendly to people that I did not know,” said Kim. “I never talked to strangers ever, but here everyone says hello to each other even though we do not know each other. I really appreciate the hospitality and I learned a lot from it.”

Culture shock was something that Kim experienced immensely. Adjusting to a different medical and healthcare system challenged Kim because she had to relearn an aspect she already knew in a different language with major differences. Studying somewhere outside of the country comes with a new set of issues. Tuition is more expensive, as well as acceptance rates are lower for international students. Students attending graduate school, like Kim, have to take more tests, including the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).

Kim found the Trump election especially hard due to the offensive things being openly said about immigrants. Despite the challenges associated with seeking higher education outside of the country, Kim encourages it if a student can afford it and found a program that appeals to their interests.

“I think I am getting used to it. I used to complain a lot,” said Kim. “When I went to New York for a few months, I started getting sick of living in a big city. That was when I realized I was really a Georgian.”