Northeastern Illinois University's student-run newspaper

The Independent

President’s Pen

President’s Pen

April 15, 2014

Hey, NEIU students and faculty! My name is Alanna Bougher, and I am president of InterVarsity Chr...

President’s Pen

April 12, 2013

Filed under Letters of Leadership

  My name is Julio Garcia and I was a minority whip in the House of Representatives. The whips are responsible for getting the speaker's list in order. Whips also inform the representatives of party line votes on key bills. Next year will be my third year in the club and I intend to run for minority leader in the H...

President’s Pen – Hillel

December 5, 2012

Filed under Letters of Leadership

  Meet the Officers & Advisor of Hillel NEIU Ilana Ostro Ilana Ostro (President) is a senior studying Marketing and finishing up her Bachelor’s degree here at NEIU. She enjoys dancing, playing basketball, making people laugh, snowboarding, and singing to herself in the car when no one is listening. She has a great passion for Judaism and the Jewish culture, loves to meet people and get people involved in all sorts of activities. She loves every Hillel event and cannot pick just one. Look for her in the College of Business and Management building, (all of the time) studying or procrastinating. NEIU Mati Zuckerman Mati Zuckerman (Vice President) is a senior studying Mathematics. He enjoys solving math problems, conversing with others, and watching movies (as long as they’re good). His favorite Hillel event to date was when Hillel brought Sukkot to Campus: SukkahMobile. “It had the best atmosphere, we got to sit in a real sukkah while Rabbi Posner answered questions and we had an open discussion; there was a bit of rain, but it didn’t stop us from having fun!” Look for him tutoring in the LSC (Learning Support Center) math lab finding ways to solve all your (calculation) problems! NEIU Rafi Massey   Rafi Massey (Treasurer) is a junior studying Biology and has as passion for science. Some of his favorite things to do are playing the banjo, dancing the tango, socializing and he also LOVES hummus! His favorite Hillel event up until now was the SukkahMobile event and loves the Hillel display case! He would like to see it happen again and many more future events for Hillel. Find him dipping his pita into his hummus after performing the tango for everyone around campus. NEIU Aaron Massey Aaron Massey (Secretary) is a freshman and undecided about his field for study but is studying everything until then. He enjoys playing guitar, watching movies, listening to music, playing hockey and taking long walks on the beach. His favorite Hillel event to date was bringing in Alex Cicelsky to talk about Kibbutz Lotan. He showed us how we could be more eco -friendly no matter where we are and how we could use waste to build a community anywhere in the world! Find him wandering through the concrete paths of NEIU’s campus looking for something new and interesting to do. NEIU Teodora Burian Dr. Teodora Burian is not only Hillel’s advisor, but she is a mother and a professor too. She loves learning about Judaism and works in the English Language Department while enjoying the company of her students a great deal! She is a huge motivator and dedicates her time showing her huge support to the Hillel and without her, things would not happen. When she gets some free time she enjoys to read, bake and just recently took up knitting. A fan of rock climbing and biking, you can find her climbing up the walls of Lech Walesa Hall through her window and into her office LWH 2048. Upcoming Events for Hillel, Don’t Miss Them! Tuesday December 4th at 3 pm: Chanukah on Camus: Olive Oil Making Workshop, Golden Eagles room in the Student Union (103) Taboun Grill will be served (CrC, Kosher Middle Eastern/Israeli food) Wednesday December 5th from 12-4 pm: Stress & "Fress" to Make You Feel Best! BBH (Science building) Room 229 (subject to change). Kosher pizza will be served if you need to study, take a break, socialize or grab a quick bite! More information? Questions? Want to get involved? Simply contact any of Hillel’s officers: Ilana Ostro [email protected] / (847)921-6361, Mati [email protected], Rafi [email protected] , Aaron [email protected]..

President’s Pen – NEIU United Greek Council

November 14, 2012

Filed under Letters of Leadership

    Officers: President: Chakira Hamilton (Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc.) Internal Vice President: Shevy Booze (Theta Chi Omega National Multicultural Sorority, Inc.) External Vice President: Kyle Thomas (External Omega Delta Phi Fraternity, Inc.) Treasurer: Abdel Velasquez (Iota Phi Theta Fraternity Inc.) Secretary: Yasmine Acosta-Aguayo (Gamma Theta Chi Multicultural Sorority, Inc.) Social Chair: Juan Martinez (Omega Delta Fraternity, Inc.) Academic Chair: Christine Ellasos (Sigma Lambda Gamma National Sorority, Inc.) Philanthropy Chair: Maggie Dudzinska (Theta Chi Omega National Multicultural Sorority, Inc.) Expansion Chairz: Denny Esquivel (Omega Delta Phi Fraternity, Inc.) Greetings from the United Greek Council. The United Greek Council (UGC) was created as a governing and uniting body to mediate and moderate the active Fraternity and Sorority population on the NEIU campus. The UGC coordinates strategic programming to maintain high standards, promote higher education, increase community outreach and enhance leadership opportunities for NEIU students who opt to participate in Greek-Lettered Organizations and their activities. We also serve as a liaison between the UGC, the university student body and administration to enhance the quality of student life at the university. Each year, five officers and four chairs are elected from the pool of active Greek orgs who are registered with the council. This year, the executive board consists of members from seven unique incorporated collegiate sororities and fraternities who oversee various functions of the organization. These officers meet approximately twice monthly, with representatives from each of the 15 registered Fraternities and Sororities to tackle issues that impact the Greek community. Guests and spectators are welcomed and encouraged. Most recently, the UGC sponsored Greek Week (Oct. 29 – Nov. 2). Greek Week consisted of six days of inter-organizational bonding, fund-raising for charity, and school spirit activities including a Homecoming dance, pep rally and flag football game. The council also works with the Office of Student Leadership Development (SLD) to create an annual publication for students who may be interested in fraternity and sorority activities, which can be found in the SLD office. For students interested in learning more about Greek life, or the UGC, there will be an Informational meeting on Nov. 15, 2012 in Lech Walesa Hall 3005 from 3:05 – 5 p.m. Students can have their questions answered, meet members of the Greek community and view a presentation about the offerings of the organization on campus....

The French Club – Bonjour

October 31, 2012

Filed under Letters of Leadership

  My name is Antoinette Senjanovich. I am the president of the French Club at NEIU as well as a French Studies and secondary education major. Our current adviser is Mary-Ellen McGoey, who is also the associate professor of French for our Department of World Languages and Cultures. Our club's current mission statement...

President’s Pen – NEIU’s GLBTQA

October 3, 2012

Filed under Letters of Leadership

  My name is Juan Manuel Gonzalez and I am the current president of the GLBTQA. With each change in leadership comes a new perspective and a new sense of direction. Under my leadership comes a shift to our roots,  a return to what makes us who we are. Our organization started on these following principals: Humanity, Acceptance, and Education. Within the principal of Humanity we have the understanding that all people have something which makes them unique, whether it be their sexuality or gender identity. Within the principal of Acceptance comes the understanding that we will not discriminate against anyone under any circumstances, we are all interconnected due to our pride for who we are on an individual level and who we are as an organization. And finally under the principal of Education. Within Education we thrive and strive to educate the NEIU Community as well as the surrounding community as to what we stand for, and matters in which we find pertinent to the LGBTQA Community. I am extremely excited for this school year and I am especially excited to be leading this wonderful organization with the assistance of the rest of my wonderful executive board. My name is Hector Escarpita and I am the vice president of the GLBTQA at Northeastern Illinois University this school year. We are a very open group and have amazing members who have become not only mine but Juan’s family. We meet every Thursday during Activity hour, in B-152 unless otherwise mentioned, so please join us! I promise you will not regret it. The club is fun and we have frequent weekly activities so do not hesitate to stop by. I am very excited to get so much done this semester with our new executive board. So far working with them has been wonderful! The GLBTQA will be hosting several upcoming events. The first is a National Coming Out Day event on October 10, 2012 from 11-2 PM. We will be showing a movie, and offering popcorn and other various snacks. In the Spring we will also be hosting our ever-popular annual drag show. At every meeting we have a fun activity, as well as once a month we have a birthday cake for all members in celebration of that month’s birthdays. Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for more information, and check our board located down the hall from the Information Center....

President’s Pen – .:Seeds:. Literary & Visual Arts Journal

October 3, 2012

Filed under Letters of Leadership

  Linda E. Monacelli - President Hello! My name is Linda Monacelli, and I am the Editor-in-Chief and Poetry Editor of Seeds Literary & Visual Arts Journal of NEIU. I am an English, Secondary Education major and have been a member of Seeds since its official launch in January 2011. I chose to join Seeds because I wanted to meet people, and I didn't want to work on my art, poetry and painting, in a vacuum. I deeply believed, and still do, that art is neither inspired nor created in solitude.  Without doubt, seclusion for an artist is important, but far more important are the inspiration and support of community. Our vision at Seeds involves bringing together local writers and artists to form an active and nurturing creative environment where art can happen and become a collection that people can admire, enjoy, and study. We want to inform budding writers and artists that their work is important, and we want to help them get their work published, perhaps for the first time in their creative careers. We are now collecting submissions for our fall/winter journal. The deadline is Friday, October 12th, no later than midnight. Anyone interested in submitting work may view the official guidelines at seeds.submittable.com/submit. Please feel free to contact me at [email protected] with any questions, comments, concerns. Rachel L. Deahl – Vice President Hi, my name is Rachel Deahl, and I'm the Vice-President and Fiction Editor of this budding journal. I'm an English major with an ambition to be a paid, published author. I started at NEIU in Fall 2010 looking to be part of something great, and I found it at Seeds. As a senior now, I have seen the great work that Seeds has done through promoting events such as “More Business of Being Born,” with Ricki Lake talking about birthing activism, and creating an artistic community for the student body through publication in our journal. Seeds is another step in my writing career where I get to collaborate with great creative minds. My future ambitions include graduating with my Master’s in Creative Writing, Writing and Publishing, or perhaps a Master’s in Communication. Before transferring to NEIU, I graduated in fall 2009 with an Associate of Arts Degree in Literature, with Honors, from Wilbur Wright College, one of the City Colleges of Chicago. At Wright, I was a layout designer, officer, and literary editor of The Wright Side, the school's literary magazine. In addition to being an officer of Seeds, I am the Treasurer of Sigma Tau Delta Phi Upsilon, NEIU's chapter of the International English Honors Society, Secretaryof SGA, and a member of the National Society of Leadership and Success (NSLS)....

Senator William Delgado Visits Campus

Sean Dotson, Staff Writer

September 19, 2012

Filed under Features

  State Senator and NEIU alumni William Delgado will return to campus to deliver a keynote address and speak with students on Sept. 20, 2012. In an event sponsored by the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, Senator Delgado will deliver his address and engage in a question-and-answer session in the Recital Hall from 1 to 3 P.M. Senator Delgado represents Illinois State Senate District 2, including the communities of Belmont Cragin, Logan Square, Hermosa and parts of Austin, Dunning, Humboldt Park, Montclare and Portage Park. Before he walked the halls of the Illinois Capitol Building, though, he walked the halls of NEIU. Senator Delgado graduated with a B.A. in Criminal Justice in 1982. “I think he’s very dynamic, I think he’s very personable, and I think he’s very real -he’s always had an open door policy with students,” said Toni Scott of the English department, who was instrumental in getting the Senator to revisit his alma mater. “I want him to talk about his struggles and what it was like for him growing up,” Scott said of her hopes for the address. “Most importantly, I want students to have access to him.” Senator Delgado was appointed to the Senate in 2006 after serving in the House of Representatives since 1999. The Democratic Senator has worked for progressive causes during his time in office, citing healthcare and education as being among his priorities. Every year, Senator Delgado sponsors the All Kids and Family Health Fair, an event that is open to the public and includes screenings and immunizations. Senator Delgado’s visit will allow students the chance to learn more about the role state government plays in their lives before they go to the polls this November. For Amir Bastanipour, junior justice studies and sociology major, the economy is first on his list of concerns. “What are they doing to help keep people in their jobs and homes?” he asked. Beyond that, Bastanipour expresses concern for a number of marginalized communities. He cites “food deserts in high poverty areas,” and marriage equality as being among issues he cares about. To reach other students, Senator Delgado will have to combat the stereotype of the elected official as opportunistic political animal. When Katie Galmiche, junior English/secondary education major was asked if she had any questions about education she would like to hear addressed, she responded, “I’m sick of hearing about what politicians and special interest groups have to say about education, because they’re not educators.” If the opportunity to interact with a lawmaker in this crucial election year is not enough of a draw, perhaps the food will be - there will be a reception after the event with food from Nellie’s Restaurant, one of Senator Delgado’s favorites. The Senator’s visit was borne of a lobbying trip AFSCME took to Springfield, the state capital. “He was one of the few to open his door to us and say, ‘come on in, ask me questions,’” said Scott. “I think that’s really indicative of who he is and how he leads.” Scott described Senator Delgado as “very excited to come.” She compared the Senator’s attitude toward students, and his own success, to the speech given by First Lady Michelle Obama at the Democratic National Convention. “You don’t close the door behind you.  You leave it open for someone else to come through. And that’s exactly what he’s done all along.” Look for flyers around campus to register for the event....

President’s Pen – Honors Society

September 19, 2012

Filed under Letters of Leadership

  NEIU AshleyBeyer NEIU Samuel Aguirre NEIU Kelly Webb NEIU Samira Savani Ashley Beyer - President My name is Ashley Beyer and I am the President of the Honors Society. I became involved with the Honors Society because of my involvement with the University's Honors Program. Before becoming a member, I didn't know anyone here at school. Being a part of the Honors Society allowed me to become involved and connected on campus. As President, the challenges and obstacles I have faced are far outweighed by the many rewards that come along with seeing your ideas come to fruition. The Honors Society has co-sponsored many events with other clubs in the past such as Future Health Professionals, French club and Psychology club. We volunteer on campus with the Child Care Center and off campus at Northpark Senior Center. Volunteering in and around school has been truly rewarding, I am in the Nontraditional Degree Program here at NEIU which I love! I also have a double minor in Linguistics and TESL. I am also an in-home volunteer ESL tutor through World Relief Chicago. The Honors Society allowed me to meet new people and become very involved on campus. Being a part of the Honors Society opened up many doors for me socially and academically. I look forward to rest of this semester as we host many more events. Samuel Aguirre – Vice President As the Vice-President of Honors Society, one of my main goals is to increase the quality of student life at NEIU through my involvement in various areas of the university. I hope to increase student participation in our NEIU community and my position in Honors Society provides me with the opportunity to interact with other organizations both on and off campus. I was elected Vice-President in the spring of 2012. After witnessing various leadership approaches by numerous past presidents of the Honors Society, I believe that our current officers are creating positive change and embracing the spirit of NEIU. In my academic life, I am pursuing a double major in Bilingual/Bicultural Elementary Education and several middle school endorsements. I make my education my priority, and I continue to succeed in all my classes. When it comes to my work, I am currently an Intern in the Student Leadership Development Office (SLD). I am growing in my position by learning about the many opportunities that the university offers for all of our students. Kelly Webb - Honors Society Treasurer As Treasurer of the Honors Society, I am involved with many steps of event planning. Some of my talents are networking, event planning, and advertising. These are just a few of my many tasks and accomplishments with Honors Society. I am a senior here at NEIU and enrolled as a Social Work major and minor in Sociology. My other extracurricular activities include being a Senator in the Student Government Association (SGA). I am also proud to be a part of the McNair Scholars Program. Samira Savani - Honors Society Secretary My name is Samira Savani and I am the Secretary of the Honors Society. I am an Accounting major and I am planning on doing my Masters and CPA in near future. I joined Honors Society during my first semester in Fall of 2010, and I have been part of it ever since. It feels like each and every member of the Honors Society is a family member because I am so connected to everyone. I am also involved in many other clubs. I am a President of the ISA (Indian Student Association), and I am also involved in SGA (Student Government Association). During my journey with the Honors Society, I have met many amazing people with different backgrounds, which helped me learn to communicate with people and become more social and I love it. Moreover, it has also helped me to become a better and a successful person in my academic career. I will continue to be part of Honors Society till I graduate next year....

NEIU Student Spotlight: Laura Nieves

Gary Soriano, Arts & Life Editor

September 6, 2012

Filed under Arts & Life, Student Spotlight

  Northeastern Illinois University (NEIU) student and Northeastern Programming Board’s (NPB) Arts and Entertainment Chair, Laura Nieves keeps her plate full. As a senior majoring in Studio Art, her knowledge and passion for the arts is extensive and her long list of achievements precedes her. Some students at university may find it hard to find their own niche, Nieves is no different. “I’ve been to four different colleges and Northeastern is the one that has allowed me to blossom as a student,” Nieves said. She dances, sculpts, performs poetry, has conducted workshops teaching poetry, and hosted a number of events at NEIU since 2010. As NPB’s Arts and Entertainment Chair, Nieves and the rest of the team are promoting several events for this month. One in particular is in collaboration with the Student Government Association’s (SGA) Constitution Day, taking place on Sept. 25 in Alumni Hall. As part of SGA’s Constitution event, NPB will host! Live Latin@! from 7-10 p.m. featuring three performances: Award-winning and globally recognized Mexican Folklore Dance Co. will perform traditional Mexican dances in corresponding attire, all-female musical ensemble Las Bompleneras and the Vida Bella Ensemble performs award-winning off-Broadway play The Brown Girls. Nieves is also part of the Northeastern Hip Hop Organization (NH2O) where she has hosted events, most recently the 1st Annual Nest Fest that took place in May and conducted workshops (U.N.I.T.Y. Culture Event, Nov. 2011). NH2O, in collaboration with the Southwest Youth Collaborative, more popularly known as the University of Hip Hop, will host a break dancing battle on Sept. 29 at NEIU that also features live performances, live art and a special guest DJ. Even with all of her involvement on campus, and homework, Nieves still finds time to nourish her passions. She finds time to paint, write poetry and is a monthly contributor at Subterannean where she break dances with her team at an event titled “I used to love h.e.r.” The event, the title of which takes its name from a song by Chicago hip hop artist Common, features live acts by female hip hop artists from throughout the city. Nieves is well-connected to her roots as she dances Puerto Rican folk dances, Bomba and Plena. She describes these dances as being cultural and having an influence from the African, Spanish and indigenous presence in Puerto Rico. Her roots expand past her Latina identity into the realm of hip hop, using it to inspire her poetry and break dances. “It’s always been part of who I am,” Nieves said. She hopes to graduate in 2014 and will continue expressing herself and her passions in the arts....

Hello NEIU Students and faculty!

September 6, 2012

Filed under Letters of Leadership

Hello NEIU Students and faculty! By NEIU ISA Welcome back to yet another great, fun-filled Fall Semester! The Indian Students Association (ISA) at NEIU is active again this year and we want to welcome you all to our club. ISA aims to unite students of all backgrounds who share common interest in Indian history and culture. ISA is back with great initiative taken by Samira Savani as president, Jayati Gohel and Chandrakant Lunagariya as vice-presidents, Indira Bambur as treasurer, and Fajila Tailor as secretary. We would like to extend our association to any student that wants to experience the Culture of India. Our goal is to educate the general student body and to raise awareness of Indian culture and promote its understanding and appreciation through periodic bake sales, regular Indian film screenings, Henna painting booths, and occasional campus-wide events like Garba (traditional dance) Night, our annual Diwali show, and much more. Please save the following dates: October 12th for Garba Night and November 2nd for Diwali Show. If you are interested in performing or hosting the show, please let us know. We are constantly recruiting new members that want to savor the Indian traditions. To join our organizations please do not hesitate to contact us at [email protected], or join our group on facebook. JAI HIND! Sincerely, NEIU ISA  ...

To Expose Injustice: An Interview with David Protess

Joanna H. Socha, Staff Writer

May 29, 2012

Filed under Features

  “Man, who was wrongfully convicted of murdering his daughter was freed thanks to the evidence done by my students. I was there, when he walked back to the arms of his wife and family and I saw the power of investigative reporting – not just to expose injustice, but also to restore a family.” – David Protess, the President of the Chicago Innocence Project talks with “Independent” about the power of investigating reporting and the importance of journalism nowadays. Independent: Before becoming the President of the Chicago Innocence Project, you ran the Medill Innocence Project, thanks to which five innocent prisoners on death row in Illinois were freed. Could you tell us more about that project and what inspired you to do that? David Protess: I started out doing investigative reporting about wrongful convictions with Chicago Lawyer Magazine, and after five years working for that magazine, while I was also teaching at Medill Journalism School, I thought about involving my students in that kind of work. I got them involved in a high-profile murder case of David Dowaliby in 1991. Man, who was wrongfully convicted of murdering his daughter was freed thanks to the evidence done by students. I was there when he walked back to the arms of his wife and family and I saw the power of investigative reporting – not just to expose injustice, to write a wrong, but also to restore a family. After that case we made this work part of the investigative reporting class I was teaching, so I involved students in several cases, and other people were freed – for example Anthony Porter in 1999. He came out 50 hours away from execution. After the case of Anthony Porter I was able to raise money to establish the Medill Innocence Project in 1999. Now I can’t imagine doing anything else. I love to cooperate with young people on issues that matter and it allows us, together, to free innocent people and change the law. I: You made this part of the investigative reporting class, how did you prepared students for that kind of work? DP: They began by reading every legal document of the case, the interviewed the people knowledgeable of the crime, lawyers, community residents, family of the prisoners, prisoners, witnesses. Sometimes witnesses were changing the story, sometimes there were alternative suspects, sometimes the police was trying to make them confess untrue. So it was very long, methodical process, sometimes it takes years. I: You mentioned one of the innocent prisoners - Anthony Porter. How the process of discovering the true looked like? Did you know from the beginning that Anthony Porter was innocent? DP: No, we didn’t know anything in the beginning. In fact our lawyers were convinced he was guilty. He said he was innocent and we wanted to hear the story. We interviewed him in the Cook County Jail. He told us, who, as he believed, was responsible for that crime. He actually knew, and no one ever investigated that. So we began looking into what Anthony Porter had said and we found the relatives of the actual killer, who said – “Yes, my uncle committed the crime”, “Yes, my husband committed the crime” and we found the actual killer. My students took the documents they read about the case, went to the park and reconstructed the crime. Some people stood where the witnesses stood, some people stood where the Porter was supposedly stood, other people stood where the victims stood and it turned out that the victims couldn’t see Anthony Porter or anyone else. The students then confronted the witnesses with the evidence and it came out, that it was police, what had forced witnesses to implicate Anthony Porter before. So Anthony Porter left the prison 50 hours before execution and you know - he lifted me up… (Laugh) I: Do moments like these recharge your batteries after very difficult investigations? DP: That is a good way of putting it. Because most of the work that we do is challenging, difficult, frustrating. People often times don’t want to talk to us, they are afraid of the truth. But when you push through all of that and you see, that the man, who was scheduled to die, goes free, it recharges the batteries and gets you set to do the next case. But to do this work you have to love the process, you have to enjoy talking to people, to persuade them to open up and tell you the truth. Because when you only wait to have this moment to breathe, well – 12 times sounds like a lot, but it’s actually 12 days in the period of several years, that will not sustain. What is sustaining is belief in investigative reporting to change public minds, in changing public policy. Those are the things that keep the batteries constantly recharged and continue to make that work. I: Such prisoners have problems after leaving the prison… DP: They have multiple problems - with finding jobs, getting training, problems financially, problems with their families which are often broken up, they get divorced, the family members move, the community changes, their friends are gone, they have psychological problems because all of the rage they experienced, they have no place to go, post dramatic stress syndrome, the problems are just enormous. I: In an article on Huffington Post, you claim that innocent prisoners do not receive enough compensation from the United States. What would be appropriate compensation in your opinion? DP: I cannot put it in amount. But what the State of Illinois is giving them now is a ridiculously low - average of ten thousand dollars a year. And 27 states, as I pointed out, don’t give anything. I think that is horribly unjust. What’s the right amount? In my opinion, at least the one for them to live, to find the job. The state owes them at least the money they can restore their lives. I think on Federal Law it would be between 25 and 50 thousand dollars a year. But I don’t think it’s going to happen. I:Have you ever broken down, when you really wanted to be done with investigative reporting once and for all? DP: Yes, a lot of times. Sometimes I was very frustrated about the cases that were going for so many years - it’s one of the reasons that not many people do this work. You are burned out, you drink, you smoke...But you have to realize, that it’s not a solution to a problem. I: Did the American justice let you down after the execution of Troy Davis in 2011? DP: My position on that is that he never really had the chance. I: That was the headline of one of your articles. DP: Yes, Anthony Porter was convicted of an interracial crime: white kills black. The victim was police officer, if the victim had been black, and wasn’t police officer and that happened in Illinois, he might not even be convicted. So the system is racist, classist it is regional system of justice, basically in South. Troy Davis didn’t receive the chance. I: Many journalism students are inspired by your work. What advice would you like to give them? DP: Follow your dreams. Don’t let the people tell you that you can’t accomplish whatever you want in the profession of journalism. You are told again and again by your parents, professors, classmates, that you can’t make journalism nowadays.I just don’t believe that. Young people are capable of accomplishing almost anything by following their dreams. I had people in my class who didn’t believe they can accomplish anything and they freed innocent people. If my 21-year old students could do that, anyone can do. Don’t listen to people, who tell you that you only grain of sand on a large beach, that you can’t make a difference in the world, you can. Journalism is professions, where you can educate the public, write wrongs and correct injustice, you can make a difference in the world.   Joanna H. Socha, is an exchange student at Northeastern Illinois University where she majors in media and communication. “David Protess - President of the Chicago Innocence Project, a new nonprofit investigative reporting group that exposes wrongful convictions and other problems of the criminal justice system. He previously served for twelve years as director of the Medill Innocence Project at Northwestern University, where his students developed evidence that freed twelve innocent prisoners, five of whom had been on death row in Illinois.”- Huffington Post    ...