The Most Poignant Post: Saying Goodbye to UF

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As my time at the University of Florida winds down, I can’t help but think about where I was when I came here compared to where I am now. As a student at UF Journalism School I can’t begin to describe the many things I’ve been taught… but I’ll try anyway. I’d have to extend a big thanks to the great faculty here, especially Dr. Andrew Selepak, who I’ve had for three semesters. Perhaps one of the biggest stages in my development as a journalist came when I began my introductory radio course and immersed myself in the bustling Innovation News Center, part of the CMIR, the Center for Media Innovation and Research. Once I began working weekly as a reporter for WUFT-FM, it seemed like I grew a great amount in a very short period of time. My confidence increased, as did my social skills and my ability as a reporter. From August of last year to December of this year, I feel that I’ve made extremely significant strides in my personal development, and I have the CMIR to thank for that.

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But the benefit of the CMIR is not limited to strictly reporting. As a student with a history outside concentration, my course load involves an extensive amount of studying. Thanks to the CMIR’s A-Ha Innovation Co-Lab, I have a place to study and concentrate when I have to read for an exam or write a paper. The A-Ha is a place where all students in the J-School can get together, whether it’s Public Relations, Advertising, Journalism, or Telecom.

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Speaking of all the students in the J-School, I have made many friends who I hope to stay in touch with beyond my undergrad journey. Many of them I’ve made in the Innovation News center, whether it’s at the Gainesville NPR Affiliate WUFT-FM or at the ESPN Radio affiliate upstairs from them, ESPN 850 WRUF. They are all hardworking students who share my interest in sports, gaining knowledge, and fulfilling their true potential.

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It has been a true pleasure to have gone through the University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications and associate with some of the best and the brightest, whether it’s the visionaries at the helm of the news program, or the ambitious, helpful students always willing to lend a hand along the way.

My final project in my advanced radio class had some to do with  recognizability of  the music of the Century Tower Carillon. In it, I concluded the story with the thought that all who studied and worked here will always find their way back to the Noble Gothic Walls of the University of Florida. Judging by my experience here and my reluctance to leave such a great place and atmosphere, I’m pretty sure I’ll be consistent with the rule and not the exception.

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The Tipping Point: Gladwell’s very coherent theories as to why things catch on the way they day

Malcolm Gladwell’s The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference, delves into the realm of the spread of ideas and how they can become popular. Gladwell defines a tipping point as “the moment of critical mass, the threshold, the boiling point”. The book attempts to uncover the nuances of the strange trends in human interaction and socializing that we run into each and every day. As Gladwell states, “Ideas and products and messages and behaviors spread like viruses do”. The examples of such changes in his book include the revival in popularity and sales of Hush Puppies shoes after their precipitous decline in popularity before the 1990s and the steep drop in the New York City crime rate after 1990. Gladwell classifies the aforementioned phenomenon as “epidemics” and argues that there are three primary rules that determine whether or not a potential epidemic will catch on. The three rules, the Law of the Few, The Stickiness Factor, and the Power of Context, are referred to as the agents of change.

The first rule is known as “The Law of the Few” “The Law of the Few”, or, as Malcolm Gladwell states, “The success of any kind of social epidemic is heavily dependent on the involvement of people with a particular and rare set of social gifts”. In Layman’s terms, this means that in any given situation, there will be a select few set of contributors who do way more than the average faces in the crowd. The Law of the Few lives and dies with the 80/20 rule, which states that 80 percent of the work is done by 20 percent of the personnel in any project. Now the 20-percenters are broken up into three separate categories, the connectors, the mavens and the salesmen. The mavens and the salesmen are pretty straightforward, but what role do the connectors play? Ever have those friends who have a guy for everything, a shirt guy, a carpet guy, a money guy, or a whip guy?! Those are the connectors. Those people use their connections to start a trend or at least perpetuate it. Gladwell is not exactly hurting for examples to choose from either, he mentions everything from Paul Revere’s midnight rideMilgram’s experiments in the small world problem, the “Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon” trivia game,  and Dallas businessman Roger Horchow among others. The Mavens are your hands-on guys, the info, the whiz kids, who lay down the physical groundwork for these epidemics. As the bridge between the mavens and the salesman, your mavens had better know what they’re doing. Then there are the salesmen, the silver-tongued, slick, charming individuals who can argue and negotiate.

The second rule, the stickiness factor, mixes the aspect of education with the general entertainment of the populace, a sort of edutainment if you will. Gladwell’s examples for this are shows that children in the 90’s were sure to have grown up with, the ever-popular Blue’s Clues as well as Sesame Street.

Finally, Gladwell’s Power of Context discusses the environment that a person is in and how it contributes to the tipping point. He uses examples of New York City Police’s zero tolerance policy and how it led to the decline of crime city wide in the 90’s. The Power of Context also describes the social limit of a person with the rule of 150, which states the most tangible real social relationships a person can have is 150. That’s a maximum.

Gladwell’s book was eye-opening for me because as someone who invests in their spare time, it sheds light on what has to happen and what situation needs to be set up for something to catch on in an epidemic-like fashion. I think students and people in general should take notice and surround themselves with people and situations to help their ideas blow up. Who knows, it might end up like this. Or  like this

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Here’s to you: A tribute to my classmates at the University of Florida

With my time at the University of Florida winding down, I think its important to have some perspective. When I first received the news I had been accepted to UF, it was the first day of the 2010 Winter Olympics. Now, the next Winter Games are fewer than 100 days away. It is surreal how much I’ve changed and grown in such a short time… yet the more things change, the more they stay the same. I still am eagerly awaiting school decisions on me (law school decisions albeit), and I’m still looking forward to spending the next few months with family.  Personally, I’ve made great strides between then and now, though, and I can’t say I could have done it without some of the great people at the College of Journalism and Communications. I’m glad to call the following people my friends, and wish them well, hoping that we can stay in touch after college and into their (and hopefully mine) very bright futures. 

Brittany Bassler– One of the smartest, most talented reporters I’ve ever gotten to share a newsroom with. An anchor for WUFT and engineer of awesome standups.

Lauren Rautenkranz– I don’t care how down in the dumps you are, a conversation with Lauren is sure to brighten your day. An unparalleled work ethic and one half of the Thursday reporting dream team, a phenom whether she’s doing the news or the weather.

 Denise Toledo– I could try to describe how awesome Denise is, but would be tough to do her justice. One of my very first friends at the University of Florida, and the best IM softball teammate a guy could ask for. This girl is going places.

Really excited to see where everyone’s career takes them. Until then, it’s the spontaneity and unexpectedness that we have to look forward to.

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More about the man: A bio that doesn’t lack Shane

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Hope you enjoyed that clever title. Aside from being a big fan of food no matter where it comes from, contrary to popular belief I actually contribute as a reporter. Currently, I work for Gainesville’s NPR affiliate. Together, along with the internet reporters and the TV reporters, we all proudly represent WUFT News. I also contribute to Gainesville’s ESPN Radio affiliate, ESPN 850 WRUF. There, I am an executive producer on Tuesday afternoons, and on Tuesday evenings I am one of the co-hosts of ESPN 850’s student run talk show, the Cheap Seats. If you listen in Tuesday nights from 6-7, you’ll be able to hear me and my fellow anchors discuss the goings-on in the world of sports, typically with a heavy emphasis on Gator Football (big surprise). In addition to my producer responsibilities and my anchor role on the Cheap Seats, I’m also the radio station’s beat reporter for the UF Soccer Team, who are currently playing in the SEC Tournament. I’ve also interned for GTN News, also known as the Gainesville Television Network, where I learned under News Director Dan Eschenfelder, a good friend of mine as well as a friend who I play tennis with. As far as my future goes, I am recently coming off scoring in the top 25 percent of the nation on the Law School Admission Test, and am currently applying to law schools. I’ve narrowed my selection down to 3: Florida State, Florida International, and Nova Southeastern University. But until I find out where I go, I’ll enjoy my time in Gainesville and enjoy the delicacies life here has to offer! For more information about me feel free to check out my Resume, which is now online.

 

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Expanding your Blogosphere: More Student Blogs

Good news everyone! My blog is not the only one out there. Moving on to something a little less obvious, here are some great blogs made by my peers at the University of Florida. There’s something for everyone, without a doubt. My blog features food, but it is indeed not the only blog that features food. My good friend Ashlyn Robinson has her own take on the world of food, her blog features many bases that I have yet to cover. My classmate Talia Medina’s food blog spans all sorts of different foods as well, so if you’re looking for a change of pace, I’d highly recommend either of those two blogs.

Not in the mood for food? No matter, maybe sports is your forte. Luckily, many of my talented classmates boast blogs about sports, whether local or around the world. My colleague at ESPN radio 850 WRUF Jason Spain’s blog will make you think, and in a good way. The insatiable sports fan would definitely love reading about things less talked about in sports. Spain does a great job of going beyond X’s and O’s and talks about sports as it relates to life. Tori Petry’s Sports blog is another one that I have taken a particular shine to. One of her best posts is about her unabashed fandom of the Tampa Bay Rays and how it has led to a deep-seeded hatred of the World Series Champion Boston Red Sox. Check her out, I believe she’s one of the up-and-coming sports reporters in the country right now. If you’re a fan of Gator Sports, I’d highly recommend checking out the blog of my classmate Eneisy Rodriguez, as someone who has a passion for Gator sports and especially the Miami Heat (yuck!) she’s about as good as it gets.

Even if you don’t like sports or food, the great thing is my class has such an eclectic selection of blog topics. Aviela Weltman talks about her religious experiences, and Amanda Di Lella and Ashley Goodus each have their own take on health at home. So expand your horizons, check out some great blogs!

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Resume Now Online

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Hey everyone! Hope you’re all enjoying my foray into the World of food. I know I am. I’ve gotten to eat all kinds of interesting foods recently and I’m looking forward to continuing that for the next few weeks. However, for now I think it’s more important that people get to know a little more about Shane Chernoff and my overall body of work. For that reason I’ve decided to put my resume online. You can read a little bit about the work that I do as a reporter for the School News Station and also my work at ESPN Radio. If that’s not enough feel free to check my YouTube channel for more! More fun with food to look forward to in the coming weeks!

~ Shane

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For your Health: A guide to Healthy Eating in Gainesville

Last time we took a look at the best Mexican Restaurants in Gainesville. Now, after many a blog post about going out to eat and having probably way too many calories, we’re gonna cut back on this edition of Good Eats in the Ville and take a look at where you want to go if you’re the kind of person who wants to eat a little healthier. My mind has already been jolted with some healthy energy as I’m enjoying falafel stirfry along with an acai berry smoothie for dinner.

So, the elephant in the room is that there isn’t a Whole Foods in all of Gainesville. Since I’m from a place that has a Whole Foods, when I got here it was a little bit of a shock for me. The door became wide open. As I got used to my surroundings here, I’ve been able to lock onto some consistently good places if you’re looking for fresh produce and healthy foods. While Boca Raton does boast Whole Foods, it doesn’t have Designer Greens. Designer Greens is a great place to go if you’re looking for something healthy, especially if you’re on campus because it’s right across the street. Whether salads or sandwiches are your pleasure DG has both. I like the tuna melt there, but the salads aren’t bad either. No matter which you pick, they’re almost all healthy, and the people there are very courteous.

Next we have my personal favorite place: Ward’s Supermarket. At Ward’s, if you like to prepare things at home, you can get all kinds of fruits and vegetables for low prices. Ward’s has served the Gainesville community for over 60 years and you can tell how they’ve been around so long. Their low prices bring you in and the helpful employees will bring you back, not to mention they make delicious breads, chicken salads, tuna salads, and cheap bottles of wine if you’re looking to crack open a bottle of Pinot and watch Sleepless in Seattle or something. Ward’s Weekly Deals are also something to keep an eye on as every week there’s something new and ridiculously cheap on sale. If you’ve never been to Ward’s make it a point to get out there. They’re located on 23rd Ave. West of Main St.

If you’re looking for something a little closer, Publix Greenwise is a good way to go. The only problem with Greenwise is it’s kind of pricey, but if you’re willing to take the hit to the wallet, Publix Greenwise has great food and a better selection than Ward’s. Their website also does a good job of showing exactly what products they have to offer.

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