What is Success?

Kobe Bryant celebrating winning the
2005 NBA Finals.

With the recent passing of the Kobe Bryant the question has been in my mind more than normal.

Success… What is it? How do you achieve it? How do you know when you have it?

See the thing is, I grew up not watching basketball, rather I was more intrigued with football and hockey. This was mainly because I did not have the opportunity to play the sport at my elementary and middle school. I did know the name Kobe Bryant though. Shooting on a cement court out in my neighbors backyard, yelling “Kobe!”

Never really paying any attention to what greatness he was achieving on or off of the court. But rather just focusing on the sport that I was hoping to play long term, football.

This sport love for me ended abruptly. Playing football stopped my senior year, 3 games into the season. See at that time I was at the point when I was most successful. I had finally made a name for myself within my town and finally making a buzz to potentially make it to the next level. Then that practice, my hips literally just gave up. I couldn’t run, it hurt to run, let alone walk.

I ended up literally gimping through the rest of the season, our team made it to the state semi-finals, and to put it bluntly we got squashed. See most seniors, at that point would have been upset, but me I knew it was time for the next endeavor.

This is where I now understand the struggle of the next step like I think any athlete has. Moving to life after the game.

Athletes are trained to live in the moment, make the sport you’re life. Well since the age of 5 football was my life. My dream to play varsity football for my highschool and win the rivalry trophy, was done. I did everything, I wanted.

I graduated with a gold cord, athletic letters and was accepted to the University my best friend had convinced me to go to. See but I never set goals that far because my focus was on sports and without a scholarship and the body of a literal 90 year old, I was lost.

I gave up the workouts, I gave up the discipline for school, I gave up my athlete mentality and just did nothing.

By doing nothing, I earned myself a one-way ticket back home. I had been kicked out of college because my grades were far from good. Not knowing what I wanted to do in life, I did realize this was the better option. Since it was cheaper and I went back to my parents for support.

Yes, there’s a trend. I did get accepted in a community college, I took a total of three classes my first semester… I dropped one within two weeks, so only two. A long with only being a partial student, I found a group of friends that loved to party. So my nights were more filled with alcohol, than school books.

Somehow I managed to achieve a (pitiful) 2.0 my first semester back. My second semester was beginning, again I choose only the classes, this time though I didn’t drop any. I finally decided, I wanted to go back to my University and graduate. The first actual goal I had set for myself since giving up sports.

The trend continued, alcohol and parties still out-ruled school, truly a seventy-thirty relationship. Again though somehow I managed to achieve (pitiful, again) 2.5 GPA, to get back into my University. This was the only high note that semester. Shortly after the alcohol continued to flow and my personal negligence, jeopardized my only goal.

Boom.

The night I celebrated getting back into my University, I ended up in a jail cell. Not knowing how I got there. Not knowing what I had done. Not knowing if I killed someone. Rather just knowing I was in a navy jumpy suit, in a room with nothing more than a floor drain.

This was my true rock bottom. The true struggle and realization of what happens when you don’t set goals to succeed but rather to fail. My first memory back in that cell, I was standing at the door, looking through the three by twelve window screaming,“What happened? Why am I here?”

The guard at the time walked by,and this will be something I’ll never forget, he looked into the window and said “You could have killed my daughter, you could have killed my wife but yet you’re here yelling at me, why do I need to tell you what you did?”

I found out later as the alcohol from the celebration had wore off. I was charged with a DUI, at age 20.

This was not in my life goal. But this was that point, this was the slap in the face to wake up and change.

Finally after this was when I started setting goals for myself again.

I did the required tasks necessary for my mistake. The only positive was that I was allowed to continue going to school at the University I started at but was required to come home to meet my requirements set by the court.

This is why I now respect Kobe as a human. I never met him but the way he handled the allegations in 2003. He owned it, I’ve listened to how he admitted how he did wrong. How he had a miscommunication with the victim and was wrong in his actions. This is where I gained respect. In no means were the allegations of 2003 acceptable, but the way he handled himself since that. That’s it, that’s the athlete mindset.

Of course as an outsider and not knowing the man, I see the positive. The highlights, achievements and championships. But, after watching the celebration of life for Kobe and his daughter Gianna, since their passing, you see what kind of individual he was, how he didn’t dwell on the past but rather learned from it. He never let it define him. Listening to each of the speakers on that stage, you heard how caring, loving and genuine he was.

This now is what I achieve to do. I have set goals to be successful. Set goals to be that kind of person, to make that kind of impact on the ones I keep so close around me.

Since my mistake, I have graduated college. Something many never thought I could achieve. After my injury and not being able to run, I now do workouts five or six times a week. I learned more about the game of basketball, and shoot at least three times a week. I have goals for a family, for a home, for retirement.

If there’s nothing else you take from this blog, I want you to know, it’s never too late. It’s never too late to set goals for success. Life is supposed to have ups and downs and just because you may not be were you want to be today, grind. Make those goals come true, make the dreams you have come true. Be resilient, because eventually if you practice, keep practicing, practice some more, your goal becomes a stepping stone in the bigger picture of success.

That is the definition of success.

Blog Post 10

We gave a season outlook for the University of Wyoming wrestling team. This was going to be a journalistic story with no narration from us but only having the wrestlers that we decided to interview, speak about the upcoming season. I experienced that editing down footage to only reaching about two and a half minutes is actually extremely difficult. I did not enjoy the idea of the group project because we truly divided to conquer and at times it seemed as if we were at a complete stand still when this should have been one of the easier finals to do. The biggest surprise for me was how hard it was to get the perfect shot from the footage that I had received from Jake. This seemed to be a very tedious process as I wanted to be able to show different angles but as it is only wrestling we did not get a huge shot variety which in turn could hurt us grade wise. I wish we could have had some close ups of wrestling but due to the physicality and the unpredictability we got as close as we could and I feel like some of the shots lacked. I also wished we could have been in constant contact with one another I felt like we divided the work equally but then just disappeared did our own thing and then finished this project. I would like to learn more about video to see exactly how commercials or some of the promos that our TA made is actually done. I feel like this was much more of a dip your toe into the pool to see what the temperature is like rather than a full on video process. Overall it was a great experience and I enjoyed it a lot.

 

 

 

 

Blog Post 9

I covered the Colorado State Semi Final game featuring  my old high school. The game was between Pueblo East and Mead in Longmont, Colorado. I enjoyed the experience because I was able to cover something I like and I look forward to possibly trying to do this as a career later in life. The thing I struggled with was getting interviews. I really didn’t want to get an interview from a fan but rather players and not actually knowing any of the players anymore it was a lot harder to do. I was not able to even interview a coach that I did know on the team due to the fact that they needed to travel back to Pueblo right away. I learned using Twitter is extremely difficult. I did not like being restricted with my characters but rather wished I was able to do more to give a little more detail into certain plays. I really wish that I could have gotten an interview and I think this was the hardest part like I said earlier. The major surprise was actually how easy it was to tweet and watch the game. This was also a major concern I thought I would be to caught up tweeting to realize that I was missing something important during the game. But overall I really enjoyed it after I thought it would have been so much harder than it really was. I really liked the idea of tweeting an event which has sparked my interest in to the field. I recently met with executives within the sporting industry who had asked the same question and I answered the similar way I really want to be able to work in this type of industry when I graduate. I think social media and social media outlets such as Twitter and Facebook are not going away if anything just going to get more in-depth.

Blog Post #8 Social Media Critique

Reebok and Nike are two huge companies in the clothing industry, both competitive with what the other has. This will analyze how the two of the companies social media outlets express their company. I chose to compare these two industries because I wear both of their clothing and both seem to conduct social media and customer service very well.

I was unable to find both companies and their Pinterest pages or Snapchat pages. Which is not a complete surprise since snapchat is not the best outlet to share information on and is actually really difficult as it was discussed in our two guest speakers and the social media panel. This also is why I think the companies of Nike and Reebok do not have Pinterest pages because they would be just too much to handle at a certain time. I did explore both companies Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter pages.

Both companies had a very strong social media presence and multiple Facebook live videos to actually go live inside the home stores. Across all of these platforms they seemed to have almost the same content across the board. This shows that when they decide to post to social media both make the content accessible on the Facebook,Instagram and Twitter pages. The biggest differences were found in the companies LinkedIn pages. Nike seemed to focus mostly on their Interns inside the organization while Reebok seemed to promote certain jobs inside their company that you may be interested in. The companies seemed to use their pages to promote new products that were coming to stores soon or even that they could buy online.

Reebok seemed to used social media in a way that was not boring and trying to engage the audiences, this came in the form of Facebook live videos. The other thing that Reebok did really well was with having many photos with their product. Lastly Reebok did well with the overall content and having a call to action. Most of Reebok was looking at trying to make you want to workout.

Their weakness I thought was found in their LinkedIn page by not having a certain target audience like Nike did. The other weakness that I found was that I didn’t feel like their content really started conversation, even though it was mostly workout products it didn’t seem very motivational.Lastly the last thing that I felt Reebok needed was to get content shared more or featured on Facebook pages, I have never seen a Reebok post or suggestion until I searched the company, I didn’t even know they had a Facebook.

Nike on the other hand did very well with having a certain target audience, they focused on the internships and how to apply in their LinkedIn page. The other thing Nike did well was to make sure all content was shared to every social media site at the same time so that it was seen by everyone who was on the certain page to see. Nike also had very strong comments and quick reply’s to potential problems with their product that could be seen on their Facebook page.

Nike however I felt did have flaws with trying to connect with the elderly audience, they seemed more focus on only a selected target audience. Some other flaws  I saw was on Nike’s LinkedIn page rather than giving certain information about a potential job it rather gave only highlighted information on interns of the month. Lastly I felt that Nike struggled with spicing up content. Like I stated above its great that they posted the same content to all the sites but at the same time I felt like it was somewhat repetitive and could be altered to maybe seem a little different.

The social media panel that was in class helped only on the customer service aspect which was seen in Nike. This helped fill in some blanks that I had about how to react to negative comments on social media. The perspectives they had brought were all ideas that I heard before but was happy to listen to get a refresher course.

Blog Post 7 (edited audio)

My audio experience was a fairly frustrating one, this is due to the fact that I had forgotten the most important part which was the self ID. With this being said it wasn’t to pleasant and honestly is something that if I have to do in the future wont be one of my favorite things to do. Overall I think it was difficult to get into a place quiet enough to do an interview in the first place and secondly just was not to sure what to ask of the person. I felt like yes I could ask whatever I wanted but how do I do it to show where this person comes from. My least favorite thing of all was trying to get Audacity to download onto my Macbook. This was hands down the hardest part, I ended up installing a completely different program instead of Audacity. I had to go and delete that program and by the end of it all I had spent about 30 minutes just doing that not even the project. I did enjoy editing the audio because I have used systems such as iMovie before so I was pretty familiar with the basic things. I did not like the audacity program at all I felt that it was not very user friendly and actually very difficult to operate.I had no surprises along the way other than accidentally downloading a totally different program to my Macbook rather than Audacity. The thing I wish I could have done differently is to do a self identification as this is a huge part of the grading process for this assignment, but it is too late now to change that.

Raw Audio (Blog Post 6)

My interviewing experience was a lot of fun and really easy to do. We were able to find a very quiet place to do the interview which I think helped the overall sound quality of it. Recording someone with an audio recorder is something I have done before so nothing to special about it. Both situations were familiar I have done both and enjoyed both just fine. I enjoyed the process of having to find a secluded room to do the recording, I did not however like that if you barely touched your phone that it picked up the noise. Yeah if you listen there is a point where I actually run out of questions to ask and this was fault on my part because I expected my interviewee to speak more on topics. This wasn’t a huge problem and we were able to fix it on the spot.

Photojournalism (Blog Post #5)

The Duel

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Daniel Descalso strikes out against the Milwaukee Brewers in the Colorado Rockies last game at Coors Field on October 2nd.

My parents wanted to meet up for the weekend and catch the last Colorado Rockies game so this worked great for this photo. The atmosphere surrounding the game was excitement and hime since the Rockies did not make it to the postseason. This photo was a lot harder than I thought just to get  a perfectly timed picture along with dodging people’s heads in the stands. I felt fairly nervous because I had to stop watching the game to focus on the photo, which wasn’t good since foul balls are a common occurrence in baseball. This photo uses the rule of thirds because the stadium, players and spectators fill up the whole photo.

Let It Rip

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Student Heath Sims plays hole 2 on the Laramie disc golf course Sunday afternoon.

I stumbled upon this student when I was walking through the park looking for something to take a photograph of and asked if I could take a photo of him throwing his disc. The atmosphere around this was just enjoying the weather considering we don’t get many nice days this time of year. This was very difficult but luckily I used my phones burst action to snap this, the sun was a constant pain throughout. I felt awkward walking up on the disc golfer to see if I could take a photo of him. I wasn’t really trying to use a device when the photo was shot but I would say it is balance of elements because I feel like the sun really complements the golfer and both could stand alone to look like a good photo.

Dueling it out

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A couple of students play hockey at the Laramie Ice and Event Center Saturday afternoon.

I happened to catch this moment of the two students playing hockey while actually waiting for the University Hockey Club game to begin. The atmosphere was very relaxed it seemed like the calm before the storm. Photographing this was actually really hard due to the glass and the netting that you can see in the photo. I was happy because I knew this would be a good sports related photo for the assignment. I was not trying to use any of the creative devices but ended up having rule of thirds because the whole photo has something going on and it just shows how a hockey rink looks.

Studying Hard

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UW senior Hayden Ehrle studies in the Wyoming Union Friday afternoon.

I was walking through the Union looking for something that could be a non sports feature and I thought why not catch someone studying since we always due it. I happened to see Hayden working and took photos of him working on engineering homework. This whole non sports thing was super difficult for me to shoot because I did not know where to look for these photos or even where to start. This was a quick and simple snapshot. The creative device I tried to use was cropping by trying to focus solely on Hayden and nothing else.

Play Ball

Coors Field from the Rockpile during the Rockies last home game on October 2nd.
Coors Field from the Rockpile during the Colorado Rockies second to last home game on October 1st against the Brewers.

I went to the game with my parents and was just trying to get a good shot of the whole field for a sports feature photo. Atmosphere was positive being that it was the last game of the season. This was not as difficult of a photo to shoot due to the fact that it was night time and the lights were able to assist in the photo. This photo’s creative device that I tried to use was focus, I was hoping to just focus on the baseball diamo0nd and I believe that I did.

This assignment did not really surprise me because we had done photography before but I did not like the fact of having to ask random people to take their photo and then it was challenging to make them stay natural even when they were getting photographed. The only thing I wish I could have done differently was try and get a little better feature non sports photo I feel that is where I lacked in this assignment. This was also a lot harder than I thought it would be.

 

Blog Post #4

Trying to Hold onto Summer

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The last bloom before the Laramie winter hits the city.

This photo demonstrates texture as its dominant creative device because you can see the fine fibers on the plant and around the flowers. The second creative device being used is color. This is because of the bright purple flowers and the green stems.

Throw of a Lifetime

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Hole 12 on the Pueblo, CO disc golf course is a favorite hole of many and also very difficult for amateur players.

This photo demonstrates framing as its primary creative device, with the trees being used as frames you can focus on the disc golf basket. As a second creative device this photo displays rule of thirds due to the scenery throughout the photo.

Straight as an Arrow

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Hole 13 on the Pueblo, CO disc golf course, a very straight shot is needed to make it across the gap to the island green.

This photo uses leading lines as its main creative device. The tee pad makes you look through the gap in the trees and to the hole on the other side of the gap. The photos secondary creative device is the rule of thirds because each individual third of the photo could be its on photo.

Pride

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A University of Wyoming flag blowing in the wind in front of the geology building on the main campus

The creative device that is used in this photo is color. This is due to the color of the leaves changing and the yellow University flag in front of the tan geology building. The secondary creative device that is being used in the photo is background because the focus of the photo is the UW flag but in the background is the building that just overall adds to the photo.

Going to Work

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Prexy’s pasture on a sunny afternoon in Laramie as students walk to their classes.

This photos main creative device is establishing size. Prexie’s pasture does not seem as big as it is in person until seeing this photo of the majority of the campus. The secondary creative device that is being used is leading lines because your eyes want to follow the sidewalks which leads you to different parts of the picture.

UW Hockey Gears Up for Season

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Credit:http://uwyohockey.com

In a small town in the Fall most heads turn to the gridiron to see how the high school team and the college team are going to do this season. Few, if any heads turn to the rink when those big hanging lights turn on to illuminate the newly frozen sheet of ice.  The few who do know, there needs to be improvement from the following season for the University of Wyoming hockey club. The team is now gearing up to start their 2016-2017 season.

Tryouts

“Numbers were down four or five guys this year but talent was way higher,” said Tyler Johnson, Captain of the University of Wyoming hockey team.

The overall vibe from the tryout session that the team held earlier this month is that they improved in many areas, talent being one. This could lead to the team being able to build multiple lines that are able to put the puck in the back of the net . By doing this it also shows the depth that the club has gained which allows them to not just depend on one line to carry the goal scoring workload.

Wyoming’s team is showing its depth in the defenseman position where they had 14 players tryout. They are currently evaluating the options of seeing if they can switch a couple of them to forwards. This transition is possible if the defenseman is offensive minded, carrying the puck in deep behind the net or pinching in, rather than being the traditional blue-liner.

The Cowboy’s have very high expectations based off of these tryouts and hope to settle the rivalries that have been built in the recent years with the University of Northern Colorado and Denver University.

Season Opener

The club will face Denver University for their season opener at Joy Burns Arena in Denver. This is no easy task walking into Denver University and being able to steal a win. A very prestiges hockey club even if it is a club team they will be facing.

” Trying to set a foundation, so we don’t have to dig ourselves out of a hole come November, but if we can come out early and get a few W’s it will relieve that pressure come November and give us a big confidence boost if we can pull out a win against DU,” said Eric Tomasello, President of the Men’s Hockey Club.

Momentum is a huge thing to have in the hockey world and a win against a team that is known to send players to the NHL. For example former Colorado Avalanche player Paul Statsney.

Stealing even a win away from Denver University would sway the season outlook for the Cowboy’s, this then could carry meaning when they face the University of Northern Colorado. The rivalry has built up the last couple of years due to the high scoring games and the physicality aspect.

Team Goals

The sense of team has already been set in place and the team has only met for tryouts and other non-mandatory team practices. Optimism and confidence for the upcoming season is also at a high which could mean some very big success and a lot of goals being scored in Laramie.

“We had plenty of good set ups last year we just could not seem to bury the puck in the end,” said Scott Wiseman head coach about the team scoring more points as a goal of the teams.

Being able to discuss team goals such as scoring is a great thing it shows that the University has a defensive minded head coach that is willing to walk away with a one to zero victory rather than having a shoot out. With this defensive mind set expect to see many hard fought and very close games from the Cowboy’s.

The team also believes that playoffs should also be in the discussion this year President of the club Eric Tomaselo said ” Its playoffs or bust.”

Playoffs would be great for this organization and huge for hockey fans in the town of Laramie. This would finally give them some credit and recognition among the students here at the University, many times we just forget or do not even know about some of the sporting events that are happening on campus.

So even if the Friday night lights are on do not forget to check in on the players at the rink. Even though they are often overlooked but there show on ice won’t disappoint. They need support from the University and the town of Laramie as puck drop approaches on September 30th in Denver. For more updates on the schedule and rosters follow the hockey club’s Facebook page.

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Credit:http://uwyohockey.com

 

 

 

Usability Test on “Louisiana’s Historic Floods”

When I opened the site for the first time I saw a huge photograph of a gentleman pulling his belongings in a boat. I then scrolled down to a picture that showed where the storms were coming from and approximately the amount of rain that had fallen in the south.

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I continued scrolling down after watching the picture for a couple of minutes to see before and after photos of certain areas in Louisiana that had been flooded. I continued only to find that there was one more photo showing deaths that have occurred in this flood compared to others in the past and links to other related stories. This page followed a tip from the blog which was not many places to navigate which was super nice.

I decided to click on the link that was a related story which opened a new tab for me to navigate  This story was more like a newspaper article and was able to shed light on what exactly the challenges that were being faced in Louisiana and how President Obama planned to make sure that this didn’t fade when cameras stopped.

Time was up before I was able to navigate any more of the related story. I then went and asked if my roommate would be willing to look over the website and see what he thought about it.

My roommate didn’t say much in the ten minute span that he had to look at the page. Rather he navigated straight to the sports page and looked at the match ups for week one of the NFL football season. He then continued to browse on this page clicking on various scroll down bars for teams, player and shops.

He then navigated to the life section of the website where he found the trailer for the new “Star Wars” movie that comes out in December. He watched the trailer for the remainder of the time.

He did find the website super easy to navigate and thought the drop down menus and navigation of the site overall flowed well. He was able to locate the author of each article as soon as he starred reading it.

If I could change three things about the site I think I would add more text to the original story rather than having mostly photos. I also think I would like to see a little more lead way on how to navigate the first page rather than just leaving it as simple as it was.Lastly I think I would add a couple captions to the photos so they are a little more easy to understand.

If I could keep certain things I would want to keep the weather map that showed where the storms were headed and where it rained. I would keep the easy navigation of other pages on the site such as sports. Lastly I would keep the big cover photo which caught your attention right away.

 

 

 

Looking for News in All the Wrong Places

As a college student my news diet, like me, is very slim. I don’t grab the nearest New York Times or read the newest headline on CNN. I definitely know I should care about what is going on in the world but most of the news nowadays over popularizes the negative aspects of our lives. When something positive does happen we only see it for a brief second or not at all because it doesn’t keep viewership. So I keep my diet as slim as possible. I am set up on ESPN on every device I own. ESPN updates happen on my phone whenever anything big in the sporting world happens. ESPN is the leader in sports so they definitely have my trust along with the trust of millions of viewers.

I think sports are a huge factor in our lives, just as big as current events. The Super Bowl has become a national holiday in America ( of course unofficial), millions of viewers tune in for the game every Super Bowl Sunday.  Most just for the commercials with a little bit of football sprinkled in. While watching sports you are informed of some world news depending on what it is as they will sometimes interrupt the game to show special information or even have a special ceremony at the beginning or end of a game. This isn’t the greatest of meals for news but I do know that its at least more than bare bones.

I hardly talk to people about any sort of news, other than sports, which is an absolute shame. A family friend always likes to try and enlighten me on what the polls are and who to vote for. In which I always give that blank stare as if I was called on in class and had no idea about the topic that was being discussed. Some of the issues that he does bring up with politics I can agree with but others not so much. I think its hard to totally agree with anyone regarding politics because you would have to pick the lesser of the two evils.

My news diet needs to be fed especially now more than ever. I have multiple classes that are dependent on current events and events that are going on in different countries and cultures. I need to pick up the free New York Times in the Union and read it every day instead of just walking by it and looking at the pictures. I think instead of just having a sports app I need to download CNN so I can keep up with what is going on in the world and hopefully stop a starving news diet.

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