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Letters to the Editor

April 15, 2011

Students of Monmouth College, please take a moment to applaud yourself. As a whole, this student body has been active both academically and socially. You have been engaged with the current issues on campus. It should be admired that when an issue arises, it is the students who take the initiative to create change. Monmouth is a student driven campus whether it is within the classroom, Greek Life, or particular clubs. This is exactly the atmosphere that is needed on campus as we move into the future.

Monmouth College is at a very special place in its history. Next year, we will see the development of a new, state-of-the-art academic building along with a student population that continues to grow. Next year will also likely mark the adoption of a new academic calendar. These academic changes are being brought to campus to elevate our academic standard and enhance our campus culture. We have always been a close-knit community that fosters a family atmosphere. With the addition of Scholars Day, the new academic building and a new academic calendar, we have an opportunity to place an emphasis of high academic standards. How wonderful of an environment would it be if students pushed other students to achieve more in the classroom?

Fellow students, we make a difference and we control our own destiny. We must continue to be actively involved, voice our opinions and seek to improve our home. Each one of us has an opportunity to make a difference. Whether it is within your club sport, Greek Life, or Honor Society, embrace the future and be a part of the transformation.

Trevor Newton

President of ASMC

I appreciate Kelsey Beshears’ article detailing steps to take for safer tanning. Unfortunately, we know, incontrovertibly, that no tan is “safe,” whether acquired through incidental exposure on the sand, or via the popular tanning beds.

Tans are the result of harmful ulraviolet (UV) radiation; if you have a tan, you also have cell damage. Aside from almost guaranteed premature skin aging, the risk of developing melanoma — a deadly and often fatal cancer — is increased by 74 percent if you have ever used a tanning bed (according to the US Skin Cancer Foundation).

Just two months ago, the American Academy of Pediatrics called for all U.S. tanning salons to bar minors. With this, the AAP is added to the list of a number of organizations in advocating for a ban on indoor tanning for minors (for example, the American Medical Association and the World Health Organization).

When I was studying for my doctoral degree, I worked part time as an RN in a local emergency room. I’ll never forget one young woman, in her late 20s, who came in for treatment one day. Accompanied by her mother, she was in need of rehydration due to the inability to swallow. Half her neck was half-eaten away by a terminal melanoma. She had been an avid tanner — including a user of tanning beds — all of her brief life. She had a beautiful tan, and she was dying.

Please don’t “keep your eyes closed at all times when you tan,” as Beshears recommends; open them up to the dangers inherent in this unhealthy practice and find safer options for boosting your self-esteem.

Judi A. Kessler, PhD

Associate Professor, Sociology

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