Author Archives: emmarti25

To Be or Not To Be: CVTE Major at Piedmont College

On Feb. 18, Piedmont College announced that they would be removing the cardiovascular technology major from their catalog. After 2022, the major will be completely phased out of the college.

Once the CVTE major is phased out after 2022, the school is not actively seeking to bring back the program. Julia Behr, Dean of the R.H. Daniel School of Nursing & Health Sciences, is one of the advisors to students who are currently majoring in CVTE. 

“All colleges have a responsibility to evaluate programs and majors with ongoing assessment and evaluation to determine sustained viability,” said Behr. “In regard to the CVTE program, many factors were considered in our decision to phase out the program after 2022.” 

The students who are actively pursuing this major have a few options as to what they are able to do. If they wish to stay at Piedmont, students are going to have to change their major. Or they are going to have to transfer. But that may prove to be difficult. Cardiovascular technology is already a major that many schools do not offer, and the fact that Piedmont College is going to stop offering it is making the choices to transfer even slimmer. Regionally, the only colleges that offer this major include the University of South Carolina, Gwinnett Technical College, Georgia Southern Savannah and Clemson. 

“There is a secondary application process for acceptance into the CVTE program and our teach plan includes all of those students,” said Behr. “Students at the ‘Pre-CVTE’ level have been notified about these changes and we are actively working and assisting them with either changes in their major or transferring to another school that may offer this program.”

After being told this information, students were not surprisingly disappointed. Sophomore Anna Purvis said she enrolled in Piedmont specifically to pursue this major. 

“I came to this school because of cardiovascular technology and no other reason,” said Purvis. “They told us that they could not support the program anymore simply because all of the technologists at the Gainesville Hospital, where we would have done our clinicals our fourth year, transferred to another hospital.” 

Other students who also have uncommon majors, like sophomore theater education major Sierra Maxwell, are expressing their anger over the situation, wondering if their major might be next. 

“I feel terrible for the people that had their degrees taken away from them,” said Maxwell. “We work hard to complete classes for our specific degrees, so that might just be a waste after having their programs cut.” 

According to CNBC writer Jessica Dickler, most colleges cut programs from their universities because of budget issues. For example, Gary Miller, President of University of Akron, mentioned that his institution is having to cut a few programs due to COVID-19 related issues. 

“The pandemic has weakened us to an extent requiring immediate and decisive action,” stated Miller in a video message

While it is always frustrating for an institution to get rid of a major, that frustration is only heightened when it is not because of COVID-19. While the CVTE program at Piedmont had very few people in it, the school makes more than enough money every year to have kept it going. 

Although it is disappointing for Purvis to hear that her major is being removed, she is hoping to find the silver lining. Purvis has decided that instead of settling, she will move somewhere that will be able to guarantee her major will be available when she graduates. She is considering Georgia Southern (Savannah Campus). 

“I decided that I would have to transfer to another school and receive my degree elsewhere,” said Purvis. “I was very devastated that Piedmont removed my major, however, it ended up being the best decision as it opened up another door for me and allowed me to find other options.”


“Love Story (Taylor’s Version)” Short Review

After losing control of her material after her record label sold it for $300 million, Taylor Swift released her first re-recorded single, “Love Story (Taylor’s Version)” in 2021.

As a casual Swiftie, I was curious. After the first listen, I barely noticed a difference. After the third and fourth listens, I noticed and appreciated the little changes. The music was the same, but her vocals are more mature. The background vocals are now Swift, adding to that maturity.

Not much has changed, but I feel better supporting the artist instead of a label that Swift is not a part of.

“The Haunting of Bly Manor” Is a Love Story I Didn’t Know I Needed

Almost two years after the release of “The Haunting of Hill House,” Mike Flanagan released another supernatural horror television show with “The Haunting of Bly Manor.” Although the two series are not related, fans will recognize some actors that make an appearance in “Bly Manor.” Victoria Pedretti, Oliver Jackson-Cohen, Henry Thomas, Carla Gugino and Kate Siegel all return as main characters in this series.

Based off of the works of Henry James, “The Haunting of Bly Manor” tells the story of Dani Clayton, an au pair who suffered a tragic loss in the United States and is looking for a new start in the United Kingdom. She soon finds work taking care of Miles and Flora Wingrave, two children who lost their parents and are living in the manor with their housekeeper, cook and gardener.

The story quickly starts to shift when Dani realizes that she is being haunted, not only by her personal tragedy, but the ghosts of Bly Manor.

This show is not your typical ghost story; it encompasses what it means to experience love, lust and loss. Early on, we learn the story of Rebecca Jessel and Peter Quint, Jessel was a previous au pair of the Wingraves who experienced a fate like no other. What started out as lust turned into an obsessive love, if there was even any love present between the pair. Even though their story is made out to seem as if it is just a glimpse into the history of Flora and Miles, it has deeper connotations once viewers learn about the history of the manor.

This show, much like “The Haunting of Hill House,” is able to quickly switch between time periods; having a whole episode dedicated to the history of the manor. This episode, titled “The Romance of Certain Old Clothes,” tells the story of Viola Lloyd, played by Kate Siegel, and how she cursed the manor in the 17th century so that anyone who dies will remain there forever. This is reminiscent of “The Haunting of Hill House,” if you die in the house you never leave.

This is a concept that many horror shows have attempted, but none of them have done it like either “Haunting” shows. Even though you expect these ghosts to remain in the house forever, you still get shocked when you discover that some of the main characters were ghosts all along. You still get shocked when a main character dies only to remain in the house forever.

As a fan of “Hill House,” I was excited for a new season that would be similar. Although “Bly Manor” is advertised as a horror show, it is more than that. Fans were disappointed when they discovered that the jump scares were not as scary and that it was, more or less, the same ghost story all over again. This time it featured a lasting romance, and a LGBTQ+ romance at that.

Although I wish the show had been a little scarier, that would have taken away from the romance that is much more important than any of the horror. It is more important for people who have experienced relational trauma to realize that you can still find love after the death of a loved one. It is more important for young girls and boys who question their sexuality that they should never have to settle and be with someone that they are not attracted to, just because that is the societal norm. Making sure that people understand this is more important than any jump scare a director would want to include.

From a technical standpoint, the actors did a great job. Victoria Pedretti deserves every award in the book for her portrayal of a grieving lover. Rahul Kohli, who plays Owen the chef, is the perfect choice to play a cheesy cook. Oliver Jackson-Cohen plays the role of an obsessive lover perfectly. Amelia Eve is the perfect depiction of a closed-off gardener who only opens up to her plants. Mike Flanagan did a perfect job when he chose to cast each and every actor for their respective roles.

It doesn’t matter what time period the show is set in — the set design, costumes as well as the music choices made it clear that we were looking through a lens into the 17th century or 1987. In true “Haunting” fashion, Flanagan thought of everything. He hid ghosts in every corner, so well that if you blinked you would miss them. Every detail, no matter how small, means something.

“The Haunting of Bly Manor” is the perfect show for people who want a mix of horror, drama, mystery and love. I give it nine out of ten stars, and it is “perfectly splendid.”

Piedmont College Counseling Should Not be a One-Woman Job

When counselor Evonne Jones left the Piedmont community a year ago, it sent shock waves through the college. Jones, who had been with Piedmont for five years, is now the Program Manager at the Turner Center. The school now has a hole in the counseling department since Gayle Robbins is the sole counselor available to students.

In the 2019-20 school year, Piedmont College reported that there were 2,571 students enrolled at the college. As a school that boasts about their student-to-teacher ratio, shouldn’t that same sentiment be extended to counseling services?

The American School Counselors Association recommends that for every 250 students, there should be one counselor on campus. Based on that ratio, Piedmont should have at least 10 counselors on campus. After Jones’ departure, there is only one counselor available for students to meet with in person, making the ratio 2,571 to one.

We, as the student body, should all have equal access to counseling services on campus. Students should not have to prioritize whether they believe that their mental health disability is more or less important than others. All mental health issues are valid, and although some are more severe than others, students should not have to downplay their issues because the college is not equipped with the tools to help each and every one of their students.

According to Niche’s analysis of demographics at Piedmont, 43% of students are non-white. The U.S. Surgeon General’s Report on Mental Health, Culture, Race and Ethnicity reports that “racial and ethnic minority persons” are being ineffectively served by mental health professionals. Because Piedmont only has the one counselor, minorities on campus are doubly being underserved.

Cultures are different. A white person will never understand what it means to be black. A black person will never understand what it means to be Asian. The list goes on and on, but the underlying message is that unless you are of a certain race or ethnicity, you will never understand what it is like to live in the skin of another race. This is not to discredit white counselors, but if a student of color approaches a counselor with a race-related issue, a white counselor will not be fully equipped to help the situation.In order for Piedmont to be fully equipped to handle issues students may face, they need to hire more counselors and ensure that they are diverse. Studies have shown that clients have different preferences with self-disclosure when their counselor is of a different ethnicity. Why is Piedmont asking one woman to take on the responsibility of having some of the most difficult conversations with students that she cannot fully relate to?

We Need to Stop Victim Blaming or else Nothing Will Change

This is not the first story of this kind, and it certainly will not be the last.

What started out as another relationship turned sour. In my sophomore year in high school, I met this guy. We began hanging out pretty regularly, even though he went to another school and lived 30 minutes away. He was my first in many things, he was my first serious crush, the first guy I introduced to my parents and the first person to take advantage of my emotions.

Since the first time we hung out, I was hooked. As a reserved person, I was addicted to the chaotic nature he brought into my life. He broke all the rules, and even convinced me to break some of them, too. Even though he was one of the worst influences on my life, I never saw it. I only saw the good. I ignored how he made me feel like the last choice, because sometimes he would text me back. I pushed aside all my insecurities, because he called me “pretty” once or twice. I ignored it when he hung out with other girls, because sometimes he would ask if I wanted to hang out instead of me asking him.

As months passed and our relationship (that was never a relationship) progressed, it became clear to everyone surrounding me that this was not a healthy situation. I stopped acting like myself, I was a person that my friends and family did not recognize. I did not care that my parents did not like the guy, because it was the first time that I felt like I was making my own decisions. I was so happy with this guy that I never realized he was emotionally manipulating me.

People who experience emotional manipulation tend to feel the effects longer than the relationship even lasts. Emotional manipulation can lead to problems with many aspects of life — trust, respect, intimacy and security — all of which are things I experienced after this relationship. You start to question yourself, wondering if things were as bad as you remember. If you have a history of mental health issues, being emotionally manipulated will only make things worse.

Even though my story got a somewhat happy ending, the majority of people who experience emotional manipulation are not so lucky. I walked out of it, for the most part, unscathed. A few months later, I would start a relationship with someone who treats me so much better than he ever did. Until the cycle is broken and nobody is taking advantage of others, we will be experiencing the effects of emotional manipulation.

We have to change the cycle of blame. We need to stop placing blame on victims and instead place the blame on the manipulators. Although there is no real consequence for the manipulators, they get away with these things because society chooses to blame the victim for being at the wrong place at the wrong time. We, more than likely, will never see the end of the cycle of manipulation. We can, though, see the end of victim blaming.

Photojournalism Practice

Long shot: Leaving Swanson Center in the fall. Photo taken by Madison

Medium: Working hard or hardly working? Photo taken by Madison

Medium: Lamp or Lumière? The world may never know. Photo taken by Madison

Medium: Smiling in the shade. Photo taken by Emma

Close-Up: Moss in the morning. Photo taken by Emma

Wildcard: Love is in the air (and in the flowers). Photo taken by Emma

Piedmont College To Host Global Hand Washing Day Event

A close up of a sign

Description automatically generated
Writer Emma Marti Contact Emma Marti Telephone 470-778-9157 Cell 678-315-1015 Email Website  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE September 4, 2020

Global handwashing day

Students and faculty of Piedmont College come together to celebrate Global Handwashing Day.

Demorest, Georgia, September 4, 2020– In order to prepare for Global Handwashing Day, held on Oct. 15, Piedmont College Associate Professor of Biology Julia Schmitz is hoping to educate students on proper handwashing techniques.

“When you’re washing your hands with soap, the bacteria tend to stick to the grease in the oils on your hands and the oil acts as a mediator,” said Schmitz. “At the same time you’re rinsing off the oil, you’re also rinsing off the germs that are connected to the oil and the grease on your hands.”

Global Handwashing Day is held every year on Oct. 15. This is the first time that Piedmont College is participating in an event like Global Handwashing Day, COVID-19 being a major factor in the participation. The school is hosting different events throughout the day to encourage handwashing and educate the Piedmont community on how they can properly wash their hands.

Dennis is collaborating with Schmitz for the event. While Schmitz and her team handle planning the day, Dennis’ team works on promoting the activity to gain experience in public relations.

“I think it will be interesting to see students simulate washing their hands with the ink and gloves to discover all the places they miss,” Dennis said. “I’m hoping that students can gain awareness of not only the importance of washing their hands, but how to properly do it.”



Since the COVID-19 pandemic hit, handwashing has become more of a priority for people. If they do not have the option to wash their hands, then using hand sanitizer is a good alternative. People should be aware, though, that hand washing is the best option because the germs get rinsed away with the water. With hand sanitizer, there is not that rinsing aspect, so the germs are still present.

This event will help the Piedmont community understand the importance of washing their hands by hosting experiments anyone can participate in. Additionally, a TikTok video competition will be held in which students can submit their most informative and entertaining videos regarding handwashing.

For more information about the event, email Julia Schmitz at

About Piedmont College

One of the most dynamic small colleges in the Southeast, Piedmont is an independent liberal arts college of more than 2,260 students. The college’s four schools—Arts & Sciences, Business, Education, and Nursing & Health Sciences—develop tomorrow’s leaders by engaging students in the classroom, in their community, and around the world. Founded in 1897, Piedmont offers bachelor’s, master’s, specialist, and doctoral degree programs at its Demorest residential campus in the foothills of the northeast Georgia mountains and at its Athens campus in the heart of Georgia’s Classic City. Information can be found at

Will COVID-19 Kill Movies and TV Shows?

“Mulan.” “Tenet.” “The French Dispatch.” What do all these movies have in common? They all had to delay their release because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Many industries have been impacted by the pandemic. The majority of them will be able to bounce back to business as usual once everything is said and done, but what about the ones that rely on people coming in close contact with each other? More or less, movies and TV shows are filmed in very close proximity and there are a lot of people on set. When the virus hit, it was clear that filming had to be put on pause to ensure everyone involved would be safe. Many movies decided it would be best to delay their premiere or to only have their premiere online.

Obviously, it would not be safe to have a red carpet movie premier during a pandemic. What about the normal viewings of movies? When the virus first landed in the United States, it was obvious that business as usual was going to be put on halt for the time being. After almost six months, movie theaters are starting to open again.

When Habersham Hills Cinema reopened, I was ecstatic. In my first year at Piedmont, I found myself going to the theater to watch movies like “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” or “1917” whenever I had the time. So, on Aug. 30, my boyfriend and I went to watch “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.” I felt more than safe going to rewatch the first movie of one of my favorite franchises. The theater requests that patrons buy their tickets in advance in order to avoid large crowds in line, every other row is open, you are required to leave a few seats between people not in your party and masks are required throughout the experience. If movie theaters are taking all the right precautions and enforcing patrons to do the same, I believe that people should start going out and enjoying theaters again, if they feel safe enough to go.

Certain TV shows were able to work around the pandemic. “Parks and Recreation,” a show that ended five years ago, decided that now is the time to have a reunion to raise money for Feeding America during the pandemic. The original cast of the show came together virtually to put on a show for “Parks and Recreation” lovers as well as casual viewers of the show.

I remember sitting at my dinner table on April 30 and feeling excited to see what the cast came up with for this quarantine episode. Only a month into the pandemic and shows adapting to this new normal? I was excited and curious. I never watched the show, but I felt a sense of pride watching the show, that officially ended five years ago, adapt how they film so that their fans can get comfort from one of their favorite shows in such a confusing time.

Even if these industries are able to recover, what if the pandemic never ends? There are different scenarios about the future of the world after COVID. People will, hopefully, continue washing their hands and cleaning more regularly. From a personal standpoint, I will not feel as comfortable being so close to people, especially strangers. It is predicted that the virus will eventually become like the flu, we have to get the vaccine shot every year to prevent us from catching the virus. If that is what to come for us, how will Hollywood deal with it?

Story of My Life (Yes, I’m Referencing One Direction)

It all started when my mom met my dad. They fell in love and they had me. Hi, my name’s Emma Marti, and my life? It’s kind of crazy.

Me with a puppy (Cacahuate) in Ecuador

Now, my life isn’t all that crazy. I just spend more time than I’d like to admit watching TikToks and had to take the opportunity to make that reference. Like I mentioned, my name is Emma. I was born on September 25, 2000, I’m nineteen years old, an only child and I’ve lived in Georgia for my whole life (not necessarily by choice).

I love traveling! Some of my favorite places I’ve visited include the Lake District in northwest England, Edinburgh, Scotland, San Francisco and Patate, Ecuador. All of those trips I took with my high school, Greater Atlanta Christian School. I started attending GACS in second grade and graduated from there, despite moving to Flowery Branch at the beginning of junior year and having to drive for forty minutes (give or take) every day.

I decided that I was coming to Piedmont in April of 2019, pretty much the end of my senior year. I decided to come here because it’s close to home and I love the vibes of the campus. Plus, there are a bunch of opportunities for things I never thought I would have the chance to do!

I’m (currently) majoring in psychology, with hopes of either becoming a counselor or doing something relating to the government? I’m not too sure, but being a criminal profiler seems like a pretty cool job. I’m not a big sports type of gal, so I get involved with other types of organizations. I’m a member of the GB hall council, a member of ZTA, a staff writer for the Roar and a basketball cheerleader (despite popular belief).

Just because I mentioned One Direction in the title, I feel as though I should say that yes, I still love One Direction and no, I do not want them to get back together. They’re doing so much better releasing solo music, but I would still go to the reunion tour if they decide to do one.

I’m not really sure what else to say about me, so I’m just going to end it there.

Edited: During quarantine, I switched majors to Mass Communications and I still watch too many TikToks. Not so sure if I love traveling as much as I did when I originally wrote this, because I didn’t have to consider the threat of the ‘rona.

Shattering the Stained Glass Ceiling with Laura Alyssa Platé’s Symposium

Breaking glass may seem like an easy task, but Laura Alyssa Platé proves that it is harder than one might imagine, especially in the church.

Platé, a religion and history major, presented her senior capstone, “The Journey to Dismantling the Stained Glass Ceiling,” at the 2020 Piedmont Symposium. The glass ceiling refers to an invisible barrier that specifically affects women and minorities in their professional growth. When talking about the stained glass ceiling, Platé is specifically referring to the barrier for women and minorities and their professional growth in the church. This barrier still exists, Platé said, and her presentation focused on the steps needed to ensure this stained glass ceiling does not exist forever.

Platé’s idea for her capstone came in her first year at Piedmont when she took a class about the life of the biblical figure Paul. As the final paper in this class, the students had to pick a topic Paul talked about, do some research into his opinion and apply it to the modern world.

“For that paper, I chose to write about women in ministry. I loved writing that paper, that class is still one of my favorite classes because of that paper,” said Platé. “I chose that topic because I have struggled with a call and seeing where God wants me and wondering if that might be in ministry.”

Ministry can mean different things to different people, and for Platé, ministry has a personal definition through her father.

“If ministry means being a congregational minister, then there are churches where it’s still not allowed for me, which definitely hits close to home,” she said. “Also, I see my dad always support women in ministry when he was a Southern Baptist minister. He came out of the priesthood because of that.”

Tim Lytle, professor of philosophy and religion, is the faculty adviser for Platé’s Capstone presentation. Since all religion majors have to present their Capstones in the spring, Lytle had another student he was advising, John Hollis Meyer.

“They both did a great job in adapting their presentations to fit the time constraints and the media constraints of the Symposium,” said Lytle. “It wasn’t what we had hope for when planning the Symposium, but as a way to adapt to the current circumstances, it was a great success.”

Campus minister Tim Garvin-Leighton, more fondly known as Rev Tim, attended Platé’s Symposium presentation.

“Laura Alyssa’s topic is timely, as more and more women go into Christian ministry and many of them seek ordination. Her section on the redemption of Eve was fascinating,” said Garvin-Leighton. “I believe that she was able to convey her main point that women in ministry does not go against the Bible.”

Doing a presentation on something you’re passionate about can be a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, you are able to research a topic you love, but on the other hand, you become aware that there are people who do not feel the same as you do. This is one of the biggest issues Platé faced when she was writing her Capstone.

“When I was going through my research, I had to force myself to read things that I disagreed with so that I could argue against them. I would think to myself, ‘you have to read this so you can explain why that’s not true,’” said Platé.

In order for women to have a place in ministry for the future, there are some changes that need to be made. One suggestion Platé makes is a separation of church politics and church theology.

“Even the people that believe that women should be in the church share culpability of the way that women aren’t allowed to leave their mark behind a pulpit,” said Platé. “My hope with that is that the conversation has to continue until there is a defined answer. Having people that are willing to have those hard conversations and not walk away from the table is really important.”

Meet Coach Elizabeth Elger

It took hurricane force, literally, to get Basketball Cheer Coach Elizabeth Elger to Piedmont College. 

“I was teaching in St. Thomas with my husband when the hurricanes came through and relocated us here,” she said. “So, if Hurricanes Irma and Maria had not happened, I would not be at Piedmont College.”

From Habersham County to the Northern Mariana Islands, Elger and her husband have taught for many years at different schools in various locations. 

Elger and her husband became teachers in 2005 and have been teaching ever since. After teaching in Habersham for five years, the Elgers decided to begin teaching internationally. They have lived internationally from 2010 to 2017 in places like Saipan, the Republic of Georgia and the island of St. Thomas. 

“After the hurricanes, we came back here to take a minute. We’ve been here for two and a half years, and we will move to Europe in August to teach abroad again,” said Elger.

The Elger family consists of more than just Elizabeth and her husband, Joey, who have been married for almost 16 years. They also have five children, two daughters and three sons. Their daughters are five and seven and their sons are twenty, nineteen and eighteen. 

Being at Piedmont for two years has given Elger some time to connect with her cheerleaders, especially the ones that she got to coach for two years straight. 

“My favorite moment from last year was the fact that Savannah Quinn resurrected the cheerleading team and did an awesome job with that. My favorite moment this year was to see how far we’ve progressed as a team from last year,” said Elger. “I’ve loved that I really got to develop a deeper relationship with each girl as individuals. Being the second-year coach, I think just knowing personalities and personal stories more so than just as cheerleaders is really awesome.”