Joe Guidry is the deputy editorial page editor of The Tampa Tribune. He is a Tampa native and a graduate of the University of South Florida. He is married and has an adult son.
Jeff Stidham grew up and lives in Bartow. He has been with the Tribune for nearly 22 years, the last 10 on the editorial board.
William Yelverton is a Tribune editorial writer who has worked for the paper nearly 22 years. He lives in the Dade City area.
Jim Beamguard is a Tribune editorial writer. He is a native of North Carolina and a graduate of Davidson College. He and his family live in Brandon.
Jackie Papandrew is a freelance writer and editor. Her syndicated humor column appears in publications in the United States, Canada and India. She lives in Largo with her husband and children. Visit her website at www.jackiepapandrew.com.
Camille Beredjick is a senior at Chamberlain High School, an avid musician and a scribbler with a quirky sense of humor. In the fall, she will be attending Northwestern University to study journalism, political science and music, and she plans to pursue a career in journalism.
Jim Harnish is in his 17th year as Senior Pastor at Hyde Park United Methodist Church in Tampa. He and his wife, Marsha, have two daughters and two grandchildren. He is a graduate of Asbury Theological Seminary and received the honorary Doctor of Divinity degree from Bethune-Cookman University. He is the author of six books and numerous articles and studies. He enjoys playing with his grandchildren and cheering for the Florida Gators.
Angela Hunt is a novelist living in Pinellas County with her husband and two 220-pound mastiffs.
Sheryl Young was a Tampa Tribune Community Columnist in 2005-2006. A freelance writer since 1997, including the Tampa Bay Business Journal, Tampa Style Magazines, St. Pete Times and nationally in Better Nutrition, Today’s Christian Woman and more. She’s received a First Place Amy Foundation national "Roaring Lambs" Writing Award, and has lived in Tampa Bay with her family for over 20 years.
Christie Gold teaches English and journalism at Freedom High School in Tampa where she advises Revolution, the school newspaper. She has been both the Hillsborough County Teacher of the Year and Florida Journalism Teacher of the Year. She lives on a small farm in Wesley Chapel where she trains as a competitive equestrian.
Natalie D. Preston is a karaoke singing, only-child pouting, Seminole Tomahawk waving, newlywed bride blushing, 50-state traveling, girlie girl who loves to shop, read, run and jump up and down on her soapbox.
Fernando Figueroa is a researcher, educator and lives in Riverview.
Interests include humor, politics, economics, community and world affairs, finance, people, religion, music, sports, current events, the arts and education.
Nicole Yunger Halpern is an undergraduate at Dartmouth College, where she studies everything she can get her nerdy little hands on. Desired major: life. No, not necessarily biology. Life.
Kris DiGiovanni is a Tribune Community Columnist, Huffington Post contributor, Daily Kos diarist, and teacher, who recently moved from NW Hillsborough to another planet - a small beach community in Pinellas County. She also blogs at www.sandscript.wordpress.com
H. David Braswell Jr. is an Information Systems Professional. He is a native New Yorker and a lifelong NY Giants fan. He attended college in California (Cal State Northridge) and moved to Tampa in 1998.
Sean Marcus teaches creative writing, journalism and reading at Chamberlain High School. He has one son and is expecting a daughter in early March. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Posted Mar 19, 2012 by Nicole Yunger Halpern
Updated Mar 19, 2012 at 04:57 PM
I expect graduate school to frustrate me until I want to rip out every hair in my head—but to teach me loads. Building the undergraduate transcripts I sent to grad schools frustrated me until I wanted to snap every pencil in my desk—but taught me loads.
I never expected the formatting of undergrad transcripts for grad schools to frustrate me until I raged against scanners and computers and technological progress.
But applying to grad schools has taught me loads.
My technological Troy arose nine months ago, when Application Two demanded a pdf of my transcripts. (Application One requested a paper copy, during what I term “the good old days.”) About eight times out of nine, my scanner ingested just a page’s lower right-hand corner. The scanner ingested the entire page the ninth time, seducing me out of quitting. Since my transcript reported that I’d studied psychology, since psychology students study addiction, and since my scanner threatened to hook me like a slot machine, I drove to FedEx Office.
FedEx Office’s scanners worked, mostly. After returning home, I learned that they’d rotated every page by ninety degrees. I learned that Adobe Acrobat could rotate the pages back, that I owned Adobe Reader, and that Reader is not Acrobat. I returned to FedEx Office.
Between subsequent trips, I learned that different schools require different formats. Some schools accept only files smaller than 2 MB. Some demand that all transcripts occupy the same file; some require that different schools’ transcripts occupy different files; some require that each page occupy a different pdf. One school demanded that I chop my transcript into chunks. The chunk size demanded by the admissions office differed from the chunk size demanded by the physics department.
I learned that drivers wait an average of two minutes at a traffic light near FedEx Office. After learning that two minutes can feel like eons, I learned, while waiting, NPR’s program schedule.
Twelve applications later, I moved to Lancaster, UK. The armory of pdfs I carried would satisfy the final four schools, wouldn’t it?
Of course not.
So I learned that FedEx Office has not invaded Lancaster; that I can’t access Acrobat at my local library or at my university’s library, physics department, or tech center; that Acrobat costs a pile of loot; and that my Mac can’t run Adobe’s free Acrobat trial.
As I prepared to hoist the white flag, someone mentioned that the program Preview resembles Acrobat. I owned Preview.
Perseverance, we’re told, is a virtue. Perseverance sustained that ancient Greek runner who ran the first marathon—the man who zipped from city to city, requesting an army’s help, delivering the army’s reply, and reporting a battle’s outcome.
He died of exhaustion.
If you run a marathon, prepare to fight. If you apply to grad schools, prepare to learn. If you standardize formats throughout the admissions world, I will pour libations in your honor.
And if you need a cheery face at the New Tampa FedEx Office, ask for Jessie.