Gonzaga’s Mathews An Impact Player, On and Off the Court

first_imgHomeNewsGonzaga’s Mathews An Impact Player, On and Off the Court Apr. 03, 2017 at 12:41 pmNewsSportsGonzaga’s Mathews An Impact Player, On and Off the Courteditor4 years agogonzagaJordan MatthewsNCAANCAA Men’s Basketball TournamentSamohiSanta Monica SANTA MONICA, California – When it comes to sports, Santa Monica High School basketball coach James Hecht and art teacher Amy Bouse are on opposite ends of the spectrum.Hecht, who also teaches algebra at “Samohi,” is a pillar in the athletic program. He has coached basketball at his alma mater for 23 years and believes that the gym, like the classroom, is a place that develops and reveals character.Bouse is not a sports fan. She doesn’t quite understand how people can blindly pledge allegiance to a group of athletes they don’t know or why anyone would yell at a TV.But when you talk to either educator about their former pupil, current Gonzaga shooting guard Jordan Mathews, Hecht and Bouse gush pride and admiration. To them, Mathews’ integrity, intelligence and work ethic are what make him special. It’s why they’ll both turn their attention to Glendale Monday to watch Mathews in Gonzaga’s first national championship chance.Hecht knew Mathews would play Division I basketball since the then-junior transfer canned a game winner, the first of many, shortly after his arrival.“That’s when I knew, it was maybe his third game for us and a summer league game,” Hecht said. “He wanted the ball. He wants to lead the team and he wants the ball in his hands. He’s a leader.”Mathews established himself as a top-level player, winning MVP of the Ocean League twice and leading Samohi to a CIF Southern California Division I championship as a senior. His success, Hecht says, is due to his intense commitment to whatever task is in front of him.“He’s just a gamer,” Hecht said. “He always would want to come in and put in the extra time. I know his father used to get him up before school, and go to the gym and get shots up. He had a blueprint and he followed it and I think the results speak for themselves.”This drive to compete and complete does not stop when Mathews leaves the court.Bouse says that initially, Mathews resisted her painting class. But his hesitation with the arts switched when Bouse took an interest in his love of basketball and began attending games she knew little about. In class, after game days, they’d discuss strategies and the mental aspects of the prior day’s contest while also analyzing art.“We talked a lot about how the art-making process is similar to sports in terms of discipline, luck, and having good intentions without being invested in the result,” Bouse said.Mathews, who Bouse calls “an exceptional person,” began leading art critiques in front of the class and enjoying the methodical process of artistic creation.“He likes learning things. He’s definitely got an active mind. He thinks about things really deeply and it helped me see sports and athletes in a new way.” Bouse said.Bouse said she’s been in the arts and humanities her whole life and sometimes struggles to understand why sports gets the kind of attention and money it does.“Socially, it’s kind of a thorn to have these people who have tremendous ability and discipline and strength and the right body for whatever it is that they are engineered to do to be so richly rewarded for something,” she said. “Because it doesn’t seem always like there’s a great contribution to the greater society.”But in Mathews, she found a contributor, and an athlete to care about.“I don’t really understand how someone can watch a game and say, ‘We won!’ You didn’t do anything, you’re just part of the audience,” she said. “But, I felt like it was important to Jordan that I was at the games and I felt like a part of it. That helped me understand the feelings that people have for their team.”“For me, Jordan was humanizing a whole set of people that in my world, are easy to demonize for people in my realm of the world,” Bouse said.Mathews’ most recent challenge brought his two worlds of basketball and education together. In order to transfer to Gonzaga for his final season, he had to complete his undergraduate legal studies degree at Cal Berkeley last summer. He took six classes in 12 weeks, something his school counselor told him was impossible.“If he says he’s going to do something, he feels a strong obligation and commitment to doing it. It doesn’t surprise me that he could accomplish that,” Bouse said. “I think he understands that how you spend your minutes determines how you spend your days. He’s willing to make those long-term commitments.”Hecht relays the similarities between effort on the field and in the classroom to his players, students and fellow teachers. Mathews, whose father is a basketball coach and mother is a teacher, is a useful example.“I’m very proud of him,” Hecht said. You think about a Santa Monica High School student and you want them to have the best experience they could possibly have. Academically, socially, and you want them to feel connected to something, whether that’s the sports or the arts, and he was such a well-rounded individual here.”When Mathews takes the court Monday, he will bring with him the early-morning shooting sessions at Samohi, grit fortified by his academic perseverance and a quick but deep mind.Hecht will gather his two sons, a 10- and a 12-year-old who worship Samohi basketball, and get ready to celebrate Mathews’ every move.Bouse, who watches every Gonzaga game, will reflect on a conversation she had with Mathews at the end of his time in art class.“He said to me, ‘If you had told me three months ago that I’d be in a painting class and enjoy it, I never would have believed you.’ I told him, ‘If you told me I was going to go see a basketball game, and enjoy it, I never would have believed you either,” she said with a laugh.Nearly five years after she encouraged Matthews to pick up a paintbrush, she will be watching him play on one of collegiate athletics’ greatest stages, grateful for the lessons of her former student.Cronkite News is the news division of Arizona PBS. With reporting bureaus in Phoenix, Washington and Los Angeles, they strive to deliver important, impactful Arizona news to 1.9 million homes and news organizations across the state. Cronkite News is a product of the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.Tags :gonzagaJordan MatthewsNCAANCAA Men’s Basketball TournamentSamohiSanta Monicashare on Facebookshare on Twitteradd a commentSMMUSD revisits Ethnic StudiesLocal woman is fifth pedestrian killed by a car this yearYou Might Also LikeFeaturedNewsBobadilla rejects Santa Monica City Manager positionMatthew Hall11 hours agoNewsCouncil picks new City ManagerBrennon Dixson22 hours agoFeaturedNewsProtesting parents and Snapchat remain in disagreement over child protection policiesClara Harter22 hours agoFeaturedNewsDowntown grocery to become mixed use developmenteditor22 hours agoNewsBruised but unbowed, meme stock investors are back for moreAssociated Press22 hours agoNewsWedding boom is on in the US as vendors scramble to keep upAssociated Press22 hours agolast_img read more

The Superfund Solution

first_img Stay Connected with the Daily Roundup. Sign up for our newsletter and get the best of the Beacon delivered every day to your inbox. When Columbia Falls Mayor Don Barnhart describes his community, he portrays a city bubbling with vitality and untold potential. He also renders a stubborn, hardscrabble town with a proud blue-collar past and an inordinate degree of loyalty to its guts and grit.Columbia Falls is unabashedly authentic, he says, warts and all.The combination of those characteristics is what the mayor believes makes his community unique, better equipping the town and its residents to endure hard times and bounce back stronger, forever booming after even the most devastating busts.That’s why Barnhart is unfazed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s decision last week to list the Columbia Falls Aluminum Company property as a federal Superfund site, even as some of the town’s residents, as well as company brass and a handful of political representatives, balk at the designation, calling the federal environmental cleanup program ineffective, improvident and stigmatizing.But not Barnhart.“This town is never going to become something it’s not,” Barnhart said. “We are who we are. So whether it’s Superfund or something else, we’re going to get it done our way. We are going to clean it up and move on, and that’s all that matters.”On Sept. 9, the Environmental Protection Agency added the CFAC property to the Superfund program’s National Priorities List, designating it for critical cleanup among the nation’s most contaminated sites. Nine other properties across the U.S. were also formally listed as Superfund sites.And while the listing is designed to ensure a thorough cleanup, it is something of a scarlet letter for the once-thrumming aluminum plant along the Flathead River near Glacier National Park, a critical piece of Columbia Falls’ industrial backbone and blue-collar identity, which for years stood out as the region’s largest employer.But the deserted manufacturing site is also a blemish on a proud landscape and the source of unresolved environmental and public health concerns, leading the federal government to trigger its foremost hazardous waste cleanup program.According to Joe Vranka, the EPA’s Superfund unit supervisor in Montana, the program will ensure that the property’s owner, Glencore, a global commodities trading and mining giant based in Switzerland, and possibly other former owners, will be held financially accountable for cleaning up any hazardous materials and addressing other environmental impacts. The program will also devote grants and other resources to the community to help spur redevelopment and revitalization at the CFAC site, while facilitating a Community Advisory Group to engage residents.The actual cleanup plan will only be developed after the initial remedial site investigation is complete, a process slated to wrap up around 2020, Vranka said.Barnhart acknowledges that the EPA’s involvement doesn’t fast-track the cleanup, but he and other stakeholders take a measure of comfort in knowing that the Superfund designation assures Glencore’s accountability, particularly after the company earned a reputation around the world for failing to voluntarily complete hazardous cleanups, and locally for flip-flopping on its intent to reopen the plant.“Nothing is going to happen fast,” Barnhart said. “You have to have patience. But before I’m done and gone, I think there will be something great on that property, maybe an industrial park with good-paying jobs. I’m not sure what, but there will be something that’s positive for this community.”Glencore closed the plant in 2009, citing high electricity rates and poor aluminum market conditions, and permanently shuttered the facility in March 2015 after breaking a string of promises to reopen.News of the permanent closure soured residents and former aluminum plant workers who held out hope that the facility would reopen and reanimate the downtrodden community after the recession.U.S. Sen. Jon Tester remains dubious of Glencore’s intentions, particularly after spending years trying to broker a deal that would allow the plant to start up again before encouraging the EPA to list the site under Superfund.Other skeptics of Glencore have come around since the company began acting in good faith early last year, committing $4 million to the investigation and future cleanup and raising hopes that a Superfund designation was unnecessary.Even though the company insists it’s committed to a “long-term, sustainable solution” for the shuttered plant, the majority of the stakeholders involved in the process leading up to listing felt it was for the best.“It’s kind of an unhappy victory — a victory not to be celebrated,” said Joe Russell, public health officer for the Flathead City-County Health Department. “I am not standing up here saying this is a victory for the people or for public health, but I do know that it is going to keep the public process moving forward. It gives us assurance that the process is going to move forward. It puts the full force of the federal government behind keeping this thing moving forward.”Russell emphasized that the polarizing debate of whether or not to list the CFAC site under Superfund is moot, and the EPA never had a choice. Although CFAC negotiated with the EPA for the Superfund Alternative Process, which uses the same investigation, cleanup process and standards that are used for sites listed on the NPL, such a process requires the responsible party to fully commit.“An alternative designation only works when the responsible party is all in. And we don’t have a responsible party here,” Russell said. “Glencore is not taking full responsibility for this site on its own. And as long as they’re not all in, the EPA knows that it has to go through with the listing. We don’t want to get four years down the line and all of a sudden realize we have nothing to cover these costs. From a purely regulatory perspective, there was no other alternative to listing.”Russell also dismissed the argument that a Superfund designation would stymie economic growth in Columbia Falls by stigmatizing the community, pointing to examples of Superfund sites in Somers and Whitefish that have not been a deterrent to growth.“Those communities aren’t suffering,” Russell said. “They’re thriving.”Erin Sexton, a research scientist at the Flathead Lake Biological Station of the University of Montana who participated in CFAC’s Community Liaison Panel, welcomed the Superfund designation because it places the financial onus on the polluter while bolstering the objective authority of the EPA, rather than caching all the eggs in CFAC’s basket.“This gives us the insurance that we needed, and which we couldn’t get from a CFAC-driven cleanup process,” she said. “I know it’s not reason to celebrate when you have a Superfund site designated in your landscape, but if you already have a landscape that qualifies for Superfund then it is a positive development.”Pat Munday, a professor at Montana Tech in Butte, is a historian who for years studied the political and social dynamics surrounding Superfund operations. He said that although the program is imperfect and can lead to delays, it has been extremely effective at holding corporations accountable.It also adds a prodigious tool to the community’s toolbox in terms of providing resources to facilitate community engagement.“One of my hopes is that Columbia Falls follows the model of other successful Superfund sites and forms a local citizens’ group,” Munday said. “It will be critical to get local stakeholders involved from all corners of the issue, from real estate to business to the environment and recreation. It gives the community some directional force and a voice that they wouldn’t have otherwise, and it also helps the community push the issue along and hold the agency’s feet to the fire and not let them be too relaxed.”Federal officials proposed adding the CFAC site to the NPL on March 26, 2015, and the EPA received 77 public comments on the potential listing, a wide majority expressing support for the Superfund cleanup.Among those to support listing were the Columbia Falls City Council, Gateway to Glacier Trail, National Park Service, Glacier National Park, Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks, Flathead Basin Commission, several local business owners and river guides, and a number of other private citizens, including current and former residents and frequent vacationers to the area.Chas Cartwright, a former superintendent of Glacier National Park who serves on the Flathead Basin Commission, said he appreciated Glencore’s willingness to come to the table and restore some of the community’s faith, but the iron-clad authority of Superfund designation is more binding.“It’s the old adage of trust but verify,” Cartwright said. “And I’m not so sure that based on a couple years of work that the company is always going to be at the table. We already know that some of the contaminants in the ground are going to present problems, and I think they are more likely to be rigorous and thorough if they have the structure and associated funding to really come up with a good plan. Because if you don’t have a good plan, you are likely not going to have good results.”“There is no doubt in my mind that going the Superfund route was the absolute best way to go,” he added.Mark Johnson, president of the Columbia Falls Chamber of Commerce, said his board members had prepared for a Superfund designation by discussing the community’s vision for the future of the CFAC property, as well as the future of Columbia Falls in the next 10 years.It’s a difficult discussion, he said, because it forces community leaders to accept that CFAC’s closure cost the city nearly 1,500 good-paying jobs, while the timber company Weyerhaeuser’s recent closure of two mills jettisoned an additional 200 jobs.The harshness of that economic reality comes at a time of significant economic growth in Columbia Falls as new businesses and young families settle there.“We are a community in transition from an extraction-based economy to something else. What that is we are still trying to figure out, but we are eager to embrace it,” Johnson said. “We want to be the first Superfund site in the state of Montana that comes off of the National Priorities List. We want this process to go as efficiently, thoroughly and as quickly as possible, and that is going to require every community stakeholder be engaged in the process. We are going to make sure that everyone involved hears our voices and that there is no dragging of feet.” Emaillast_img read more

Study ‘opens gate’ to understanding depression

first_imgLinkedIn Pinterest “Clinicians who treat depression tend to work on a trial-and-error basis, whereas this model could give them a more systematic and effective method for making decisions about treatment,” said Andrea K. Wittenborn, associate professor in MSU’s Department of Human Development and Family Studies and lead investigator on the study. “Most importantly, this model provides a method for personalizing treatment to each unique patient.”Depression is likely caused by multiple biological, psychological, social and environmental drivers, and these factors often overlap, such as cortisol hormone levels going up in response to stress from troubled relationships or economic hardship. Yet most previous research on depression focused on only one or two factors, and not how the many factors intersect and unfold over time.Wittenborn and colleagues analyzed nearly 600 scientific articles on depression and incorporated the major drivers of depression discussed in the research into a complex model that essentially diagrams how one driver affects another. Depression drivers range from sleep problems to social isolation to inflammation of the brain.Study co-author Hazhir Rahmandad, an MIT scholar, is an expert in a process called system dynamics that’s more common to engineering and business. The team used this approach to create a comprehensive model of depression. While future research is needed to further validate the model, it’s a vital first step in better understanding depression and potentially improving care for the illness.Thanks to the findings, therapists or even patients one day could plug depression triggers into a smartphone app and receive a recommendation for the most appropriate treatment.Despite decades of intervention, research and public awareness efforts, depression remains a remarkably destructive public health problem that costs the United States more than $210 billion a year, Wittenborn said. While psychotherapy and antidepressants help some people, response varies widely and only leads to meaningful improvement for about half of patients.“This model opens the gate to understanding depression as it relates to the whole person and all of his or her experiences,” Wittenborn said. “It helps us understand how depression varies by person – because we know depression varies widely across people, and we think that has something to do with why treatment is not always effective.” Share on Twitter A new scientific model that incorporates the myriad drivers of depression could lead to more precise treatment for an illness that affects 350 million worldwide.Developed by scientists at Michigan State University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, the model provides a better understanding of depression and the foundation for creating a pioneering tool to attack the complex disorder.A paper outlining the research team’s findings is published online in the journal Psychological Medicine.center_img Share on Facebook Share Emaillast_img read more

Jahovičs: We are in the strongest group with several teams very…

first_imgThe Rigans were drawn in subgroup A, where they will have to compete with the first champions of the tournament Tenerife “Iberostar” from Spain, the famous Istanbul “Galatasaray” from Turkey, Strasbourg SIG from France, Sassari “Dinamo” from Italy, “Peristeri” from Greece and Vilnius “Rytas” from Lithuania.“We have been drawn into the seemingly strongest group with several very well-known teams at the European level, which do not require unnecessary comments. Also, our team has drawn two teams that we saw in Riga last season -” Tenerife “and” Peristeri “,” the club quotes Jahovic.At the same time, Jahovičs emphasizes that at the moment it is very difficult to judge objectively about the balance of team strength, because all clubs are still actively recruiting.“Participation in the Champions League is a very good opportunity for” VEF Rīga “basketball players to prove themselves at a high level, as well as gain experience in an international tournament. It is also a great opportunity for spectators to see high-level European basketball in Latvia at least seven times,” emphasizes Jahovičs.The seven teams will be joined by one qualifying team: Tel Aviv’s Hapoel (Israel), Aarhus’ Bakken Bears (Denmark), Belfius Mons-Hainaut or Wloclawek’s Anwil (Poland).“VEF Rīga” made its debut in the Champions League last season, winning the first game, but suffering losses in the next 13. Before that, Latvia was represented in the tournament by “Ventspils” for three seasons, which did not exceed the qualification last year.last_img read more