Staff Bios

Spring 2015

Ian Finnerty


I’m Ian Finnerty and I was born and raised in Altamonte Springs Florida. This is my second semester at Seminole State College after graduating from Lake Brantley High School. I am a simple man who enjoys simple things, the finer things in life are often not a necessity for me but are quite enjoyable in moderation, as is everything. Journalism is not a passion of mine however the truth seeking aspect is a great quality that one can posses, I hope that taking this course will help me be as unbiased as possible and to poke and prod the truth out of as many people I can.

My whole life I have been told to find what you love to do and find a way to make money at it, with my motorcycle escapades I found that although I have a need for speed but sponsors do not have a need for me, unfortunately for them. I have not been into writing for as long as I have loved both Motorcycle Racing and Wrestling, both of which I don’t have a bright future in however will always be a passion for me, as I hope journalism will become after this semester.


Elliot Lee

My name is Elliot and I was born and raised in Altamonte Springs. i graduated from Lake Brantley High School and am currently on my third Semester Seminole State College. Right now i am trying to get my general education A.A., but eventually i would like to move to Colorado and get my Bachelors in Computer Science and Digital Design. My dream is to have a career that i love and to eventually move to France. I never really considered journalism one of my passions, in high school i took four years of Photography. But I’ve always taken a large interest in whats going on in the world, especially the things that our current media doesn’t seem to report on. i absolutely love art, whether its visual art or music. Freedom of expression is very important to me and i enjoy discussing politics with others. Honestly in recent year I’ve noticed that modern media does an extremely poor job reporting the news, which i feel is one the primary reason why i took an interest in journalism, i find my self frequently researching and talking about world events that are either misunderstood or are just unknown to the common public.


Alex Sylvia

Hey guys!

My name is Alex and I am a 19 year old journalism major at Seminole State College. I started my college experience with the intention of pursuing a degree in nutrition and dietetics. Upon becoming aware of the rigorous and lengthy course plan, I decided that it wasn’t for me. As passionate as I am about healthy living, the rote memorization required by the many chemistry classes was not quite appealing, as well as the extra years to acquire a Ph.D.

So, from there, I hesitantly changed my major to biotechnology, a complete 180 from nutrition and dietetics. So, why biotechnology? Recently in scientific advances, 3D printing has made staggering headlines. The applications possible for the technology, from artificial organs and limbs, to building tools on the space station from almost any organic material, and even as far as to domestic recycling, were enough to get me interested in the field as biotechnology deals with the manipulation of organic materials and organisms. Again, however, it took me a whole semester to realize that the required schooling was far beyond my interest in the subject. Even more science courses were required for just the AA degree. It’s not that I doubted myself in successfully completing the classes, it’s just that I doubted that I would really even enjoy it after eight or more stressful years preparing for it.

Now, I am in my fourth semester of college, and after this semester, I should be transferring to a larger university. Should be. After many nights of lying in bed thinking of what I’m going to do with my life, unable to sleep and unable to decide on a major, I chose to go with the flow and get into something I’m confident in and familiar with. So I settled on journalism. I was always a very proficient writer, arrogantly (and may I say, successfully) dismissing my instructors who insisted that their writing assignments could NOT be done adequately a day or even a week before the due date. Well, I wouldn’t be taking this journalism course if I hadn’t gotten A’s on all those papers with praising notes of validation accompanying my grade. That all being said, I do not mean to sound cocky, and as I have already documented here, I doubt myself constantly. I know that there are many better and more practiced writers out there. Taking this class is simply just me giving in to my natural tendencies and hoping (probably ignorantly so) that I’m as good as I think I am.

So, that’s me, a healthy living geek who like to write.


Keyla Exclusa

I’m Keyla, born in Puerto Rico and raised in central Florida. As the youngest of five children, I grew to become introspective and I began writing in a journal as early as I can remember. From my journal, my love of writing was born. Fashion and photography are my other two great loves and my ways of creative expression.


My way of combining all of the things I love is through fashion photojournalism. Whether through street style photography or traveling the world documenting different culture’s traditions and how those traditions translate into what they wear and how they present themselves, I want to do it all.

I’ve also always had an immense compassion for people and want to join the Peace Core at some point in my life. I’m driven and ambitious, eager to see a world outside of Central Florida and with journalism I want to tell my story through other people’s stories.


Tiffany Castro

Hi, I’m Tiffany. I’m a student. I think if there was a degree in life, I would be the first one trying to earn it. As an aspiring photojournalist and missionary,  I seek to give a voice to those who don’t have the freedom of having one. I want to use my life and my words to fight for people against injustice. I desire to show teenagers and young adults in developed nations what is happening around the world, hopefully offering up a global perspective that inspires them to take action in a way that gets outside the mindset of narcissism and into that of selflessness. I strive to spend the rest of my life serving people, sharing in their stories and truly hope my work can be a reflection of them.


Lauren Seay

My name is Lauren, however my friends and family call me Lo. I am a true Floridian born and raised in Winter Springs. I have had a successful career in the jewelry industry for the past 16 years but have grown tired of it. I am now pursuing my dream career in journalism. I’m not quite sure where I want my degree to take me yet. I just know that I want to report what is happening in the world: whether it is in sports, fashion or news.

I’m extremely busy between work and school, but I make time for the important things in life. I spend as much time as I can with my three nephews, friends, and never miss Thursday night dinners with my dad or football Sundays!


Kimberly Shantel Burns

I am a student at Seminole State College and I love being a student at Seminole State College. My current age is 27 and I live in Deland, FL with my boyfriend of four years. I do not have any kids but I would love to adopt someday. Writing is my passion and so are people, which is why I want to be a Journalist. I have been writing poetry and short stories since I was 8 years old. After I receive my associates  degree in journalism, I am going to continue my schooling and get my bachelors degree in journalism as well.

I am most passionate about writing about other people’s life journeys. I would love to work with the criminally insane. I want to hear their stories from start to finish and share their stories with the world. I am very interested in knowing why people do what they do and how life can shape individuals and the paths that they take.

I graduate this year of 2015 and I am very excited. I have worked hard and it shows. I can’t wait to walk across that UCF stage and receive my degree. This has been an awesome journey and I am looking forward to nothing but success in my future.


Carl Barrett (Editor)

My name is Carl Barrett. At age 3,my family moved to the Orlando area, leaving behind Putnam, Connecticut. I’ve remained in this area since and currently live in Apopka. I became interested in journalism because I’ve enjoyed writing my entire life and always enjoyed writing about things in the real world more than making up stories. I grew up reading magazines like Rolling Stone and became inspired by writers like Evan Wright and Hunter S. Thompson who reported in non-fiction but also wrote fantastically interesting stories. I’ve been active in Android community since it’s inception and have contributed to a few blogs. In general I’m very interested in technology, science and skepticism and enjoy writing about them. My dream job would be to write for Scientific American or Popular Mechanics. I also have a passion for reading and writing about politics which I think is important now more than ever. My other hobbies include motorcycling, reading comic books and gaming. I’m currently a store manager at RadioShack in Longwood where I have worked for 5 years.


Tia Gautreaux

My Name is Tia Gautreaux. I am a mother of two little boys. I work as an event coordinator/wedding planner and I love to write. My long time pursuit of a degree in journalism should come to an end in 2017. It has been a long journey and I have achieved many goals throughout it. I am originally from Baton Rouge, Louisiana and I am a huge football fan! I love my Saints and Louisiana State University Tigers. I have a passion for where I came from as well as where I am. Florida and Louisiana both hold a special place in my heart. I always tell everyone to travel to New Orleans at least once in his life. There is no other culture in the United States like that of New Orleans. I also believe in Florida we have the best beaches and I know I probably couldn’t survive if I lived too far from them.


I developed an interest for writing in the fourth grade. I gained my inspiration from my English teacher, an extremely passionate writer. I found everything we did in class so intriguing that it created my dream for which I chase today. I have many interesting qualities and talents: I am well-traveled, I speak and understand Spanish but I am not fluent, I hand craft and sell all types of personalized items, I do hair and makeup, I can bartend like a champ! I am a dancer as well as a writer and most importantly I am a mom.


Joseph Meadows

My first love in life is music.  First impressions of it were singing hymns with my father in church.  I started playing music formally at the age of ten and it’s been an obsession and love affair ever since.  I’ve performed in over thirty states, Canada and all over Europe.  I’m currently involved in three projects locally: a reggae/ska/rock band, Paddington Ambush; a soul/Motown style band called the Sh-Booms; and a New Orleans-style brass band which has yet to be named.

My second love in life is travel.  Being born and raised in Nowhere, Florida, I was eager to get out and see the wider world around me, a world full of wonderment and excitement.  Since I’ve been bitten by the “travel bug”, I’ve been to Europe almost every year since 2000.  My personal favorite spot in the world to travel is Barcelona.  Wonderful food, artwork (see Gaudi), architecture and people make it a truly international city with tons of flair and panache.

My third love in life is food.  I’ve told many friends that “I love everything, from nacho cheese to foie gras.”  I’m constantly curious and amazed at the ingredients and techniques involved in creating great dishes.  To me, it’s a well-forged ally between science and the arts.  Creativity meets technical abilities.

These are my passions.

Fall 2014

Melissa B. Merkler, EIC

After all my years in college, seeing the world and living life, sometimes on the edge, I still haven’t figured out “what I want to be when I grow up.” Now, on the downhill slope to 40-years-old, time seems to really be catching up with me as I continue to ponder on what life has to offer.

I have learned the meaning behind the word “hustle.” I enjoy the idea of not spinning my wheels day-in and day-out at an office desk. Journalism allows me to see the world from a different perspective. “Giving a voice to the voiceless” has become my mantra. My goal is to help people tell their stories that may never be heard otherwise.

My passion for editing and storytelling has led to the birth of Lonely Llama Publishing. Unfortunately, it’s a tough business and not easy to make money with the “print on demand” competition online. I’m also the editor-in-chief for The Seminole Scribe, the official student newspaper of Seminole State College of Florida.

In between editing books and going to college I manage a household ransacked by a three-year-old little girl who leaves a trail of toys everywhere she goes.

Lastly, I am embarking on a “100 days of Pinterest” challenge. If anyone wants to join me I’d love the company. Follow my blog to read about it at Cat On a Log.

I wish all of you the best of luck and look forward to learning with fellow #journos. @melissabmerkler


Jordan Donohue

Hi there. I’m Jordan, and I am a book worm who hopes to one day see my name on the cover of a book in the local bookstore. I love writing- no seriously- it’s in my blood and I can’t get enough. Bring on the research papers! I enjoy writing poetry, short stories and on occasion, scripts, so really my face is stuck in my computer 24-7.

I enjoy reading fiction, especially the classics, like The Three Musketeers and Alice in Wonderland. I’m a grammar freak who hates it when people say “literally” when they mean “figuratively,” and contrary to my shy and introverted aura, I love being the center of attention on camera. I don’t get it either…I suppose I was a celebrity in a past life. I’m sort of a perfectionist. I also have  an obsession for desserts. If I could, I would eat sweets for every meal of the day along with a Starbuck’s coffee.

Journalism is a completely new area of writing to me, and it’s definitely an area I can’t wait to explore! I’m competitive and ambitious, so let the race for best news story begin! In all seriousness though, I can’t wait to work with the other amazing people on my team as we navigate the uncharted waters of journalism together.


Haylee Moffis

Hey y’all!

My name is Haylee Moffis and I’m a Florida girl born and raised. This is my last semester at Seminole State College of Florida before obtaining my Associate of Arts degree, exciting! My passion for capturing photos of every day life and writing about those experiences led me to journalism.

The ocean is my happy place… I love to kayak, paddle board, fish and relax under the sun.  Since I will be following my boyfriend, a United States Coast Guardsman, around the country coast to coast, I plan on becoming a blogger and sharing our journey to help others along the way.


Carl Barrett

My name is Carl Barrett. At age three my family moved to the Orlando area, leaving behind Putnam, Connecticut. I’ve remained in this area since and currently live in Apopka. I became interested in journalism because I’ve enjoyed writing my entire life and always enjoyed writing about things in the real world more than making up stories. I grew up reading magazines like Rolling Stone and became inspired by writers like Evan Wright and Hunter S. Thompson who reported in non-fiction but also wrote fantastically interesting stories. I’ve been active in Android community since it’s inception and have contributed to a few blogs. In general I’m very interested in technology, science and skepticism and enjoy writing about them. My dream job would be to write for Scientific American or Popular Mechanics. I also have a passion for reading and writing about politics which I think is important now more than ever. My other hobbies include motorcycling, reading comic books and gaming. I’m currently a store manager at RadioShack in Longwood where I have worked for five years.


Alexander Alfonso

Alexander Paul Alfonso is the name. Born and raised in the Altamonte Springs area, I am the older brother of an awesome sister named Madison. I like to think of myself as an extremely down- to- earth person who is one with my environment. I fully love and embrace nature and the world  around me. I love being around good people with positive attitudes and groovy vibes. I do not like the idea of stress and try to avoid it as much as possible. I currently work at the Picture Show movie theater in Altamonte, Florida. It is an ideal place to work due to the fact that it is very fun and flexible with my school schedule. Plus I get to see a lot of interesting characters on a day to day basis. I currently have two semesters remaining at Seminole State College of Florida (counting this one). I will then receive my Associates in Arts and direct connect to UCF where I plan to take my Journalism degree and fingers-crossed do something I will really enjoy, like news broadcast or entertainment.

Life is good.


Tia Gautreaux

My Name is Tia Gautreaux. I am a mother of two little boys. I work as an event coordinator/wedding planner and I love to write. My long time pursuit of a degree in journalism should come to an end in 2017. It has been a long journey and I have achieved many goals throughout it. I am originally from Baton Rouge, Louisiana and I am a huge football fan! I love my Saints and Louisiana State University Tigers. I have a passion for where I came from as well as where I am. Florida and Louisiana both hold a special place in my heart. I always tell everyone to travel to New Orleans at least once in his life. There is no other culture in the United States like that of New Orleans. I also believe in Florida we have the best beaches and I know I probably couldn’t survive if I lived too far from them.

I developed an interest for writing in the fourth grade. I gained my inspiration from my English teacher, an extremely passionate writer. I found everything we did in class so intriguing that it created my dream for which I chase today. I have many interesting qualities and talents: I am well-traveled, I speak and understand Spanish but I am not fluent, I hand craft and sell all types of personalized items, I do hair and makeup, I can bartend like a champ! I am a dancer as well as a writer and most importantly I am a mom.


Lynzie Fess

I am a 19 year old college student who is anything but lazy. I currently have two jobs and remain a full time student at Seminole State College of Florida. Recently I decided to follow my passion and switch my major to English. I have loved to write since I was a little girl, so inevitably, I decided to make a career of it. I have always said as long as I can write, I will forever be happy.

When I’m not shuffling through notecards or running errands for my boss, I like to relax as much as possible. I really enjoy going out on the water with my friends and of course, Netflix.

Once I receive my bachelor’s degree, I intend to move to Boston, Massachusetts to continue my education and obtain my master’s in creative writing. From there I hope to study abroad along with work for a local magazine. I have always been in love with different cultures and hope to learn everything that I can about this world. My minor is Spanish because my dream job would be anything that would allow me to travel the world and write. I hope that one day people will be reading a lot more from me than just this biography. Until then, adios.


Jorge Minotta

My name is Jorge Minotta, 23 years old born in Cali, Colombia. I moved to the Sanford, FL when I was 8 years old. I’m in journalism because I like writing and discovering new and interesting things. I graduated from Seminole High School’s Health Academy program in 2009. I then went on to Seminole State College of Florida to pursue my general education A.A. I graduated with my A.A. in the spring of 2012 and then went on to UCF to pursue a Bachelors in Health Sciences. During that course I decided that a major in Health Sciences wasn’t for me so I changed my major to Journalism and enrolled at Seminole State to complete some prerequisites for the Journalism program at UCF. I’m interested in many things like sports, space, science, politics and entertainment. I am a die hard soccer fan, I love anything and everything to do with the world of soccer. As a student journalist I hope to learn and discover many new things about myself and the world. I currently work part time at a restaurant called Christo’s in downtown Sanford, but my dream job in journalism would have to be something to do with sports, hopefully soccer. I would love to work for networks like ESPN or FOX Sports. I’m excited about what this new adventure holds for me and my future.


Spring 2014

Bianca Cacho

My name is Bianca Cacho. I was born in Kissimmee, Florida but grew up in a small town named Lake Mary, Florida. I currently live in a small country town in the middle of nowhere named Sorrento, Florida. Although I have always lived in a small town I have big city dreams.

I picked journalism as my major because I am not good at anything else really. Math and science are not my strong suits and I absolutely hate the sight of blood, it makes me queezy. My mom is a cop and of course she wants me to fight crime for a living but dealing with bad guys all day does not float my boat. Writing has always been something that I have been good at. My second grade teacher told me I was going to be an author of famous books when I grew up and although it may have been forever ago that was something I never forgot. Currently I am a sophomore at Seminole State College of Florida working towards a degree in broadcast journalism. I plan on finishing my bachelor’s at Florida State University then moving on to hopefully fulfill my goals as a sports broadcaster for ESPN or Fox Sports.

I work at Audi North Orlando and I stare at expensive cars that I cannot afford all day, I use it as motivation. When I am not sitting in a luxurious showroom I enjoy going to the gym and also spending all the money I make by shopping. I also love playing with my four dogs, they are like my babies. I sing out loud a lot even though I am not musically inclined. I danced for a very long time and now I am just a college student trying to make it.


Shannen Connor

Hello all, my name is Shannen Rene Connor. I am 22 years old, and I am an aspiring Journalist. I currently work at a 7-Eleven in Sanford, Florida, and although I love my job, it is certainly not my dream job. My dream job is to hopefully one day, become a successful Journalist, working for either ESPN or NFL Network. A little bit more about myself; I graduated from Lyman High School, class of 2010. So far, I have enjoyed my experience here at Seminole State College. I would consider myself a pretty funny person, once you get to know me. I often come across as a shy person in the beginning, but I promise you, I open up a lot once I get to know you. I have always had a love for writing, as well as sports, so after a lot of consideration and changing of my major, I finally decided that I wanted to excel in Journalism. It just seems fitting to me. To add more to this biography, I have a great family who has been by my side from the good times to the bad. I also have a loving and amazing partner who has always been my other half (I love you)! Also, I have three adorable guinea pigs who I love very much (their names are Peanut, Mocha, and Vinny). My favorite sports are basketball and football, and I like five teams, which to most people, is too many, but in my opinion, there is no such thing if you are a true fan to each team. I think I pretty much covered everything about myself, so thank you to those checking out my biography.


Christina Fleming

My name is Christina Lori Fleming. This is my third year attending college; however, due to being a transfer student I am registered as a sophomore at Seminole State. Before Seminole State I lived in Atlanta, Georgia and attended Kennesaw State University. My intentions are to receive an A.A degree at Seminole State as a communications major with a concentrate of journalism and media studies. Then I intend to transfer to the University of Central Florida and receive my Bachelor’s degree. Experience I have within the journalism field starts back in high school. I was the lead photography editor of my school’s yearbook for two years, and this is when I learned my passion for journalism. I was also a reporter during this process. It helped me learn the basics of an interview, how to process InDesign, manage deadlines, develop copy editing skills, and improve upon my photography editing. I also attended a journalism convention in Washington D.C. during this time period with the other journalism students at my school. This exposed us to the new ideas and structures that were being developed at the time encouraging us to expand our creativity in stories, web design, and alternatives copies for our yearbooks, newspapers, and magazines. Throughout college I have taken several classes that have permitted me to enhance my skills as a reporter in journalism. The classes I have taken are: Human Communications, Public Speaking, Writing for Public Communications, and Visual Communications. These classes have broadened my prospective as a journalist, and have allowed me to practice submitting information before deadlines, guided me in the basics to writing in AP style and to work efficiently with my peers in group affiliated presentations and projects. Outside of school I am a bartender at the World of Beer. I have a strange obsession with my dog Luna, and I enjoy activities such as hiking, kayaking, music festivals, and traveling.


Matthew Jezak

I am a filmmaker, photographer and journalist that is intrigued by the ways technology reaches people everywhere. The goal with my stories is to explore the creative side of humanity and share those stories with the world. I graduated from Seminole State College in 2013 with a degree in Digital Cinema. In my free time I watch films of all sorts, write short stories and spend time with my family. When I’m not watching films I spend my time exploring Florida with my cameras. I love to take pictures and film video. When I’m not taking pictures or filming, I am behind my Apple workstation editing video and pictures to share with the world.


Melissa B. Merkler

Do you know how you have that one dream which seems completely unattainable either because it doesn’t feel like it can be achieved or because others look down upon it and say “you can’t make a living at that?”

Well, that scenario pretty much sums up my current situation.

I grew up with an influential mother insisting that my writing skills were above average. I always went to her with final proofing edits and a personal need for her to “approve” of writing assignments in middle and high school.

As I grew up and tried to figure out what I was “going to be,” anything remotely related to writing or English didn’t seem within reach. So, I ventured away from my hidden dreams and pursued other career choices.

Now today, at nearly 36-years-old, I have started over with a new educational journey; one that I am determined will be successful and fulfilling.

Publishing, editing, writing, reporting and anything journalism-related are my new life goals. I hope to one day own a publication, be an editor for a science magazine or write and report for NPR.

In addition to journalism, I am now a wedding officiant. I’m nervous about standing before a crowd of people listening to me speak. However, I feel it is one of God’s callings, so I am listening. To help me with my public speaking phobia I found Toastmasters. I highly suggest finding one in your area.

Don’t forget, the only thing standing in the way of your dreams is yourself. @melissabmerkler


Nicole Mueller

Nicole Mueller is a student at Seminole State College of Florida earning her associate’s degree in Journalism. Her plans are to continue her education at the University of Central Florida majoring in Broadcast Journalism. She is an aspiring news reporter, but is currently a full time barista at a local café, part time student and writer for The Seminole Scribe. On her days off, you can find her watching the morning news, discovering local coffee shops in the area, out fishing or playing with her newly rescued husky named Juno.


Domonique Quinn

Domonique is my name, yes with an “o” not and “I.” People spell my name incorrectly almost all of my life, and let’s say it is pretty annoying.  I was born and raised in Sanford, FL. I can say I’m pretty country and the city life freaks me out, the traffic, the speeding, and too many people bother me. I loved living on my grandmother’s land secluded away from everyone, it was awesome.

I was an “oops” baby as they would like to say, because my mother had me in her 40’s, so my parents are older than others.  I have seven brothers and sisters all older me, so I’m the baby.

I love to dance; I started dancing at the age of seven, and was also a Seminole Dazzler. I also love fashion, thrift shopping is the BEST. I actually can say I have a shopping problem.

My one year old daughter Kyleigh has changed my life for the better, she is freaking AWESOME. I can say I do not know what I would have been like today without her.

Three years from now I want to have my own magazine called KY, (my daughter’s nick-name). It is going to be an urban “seventeen” magazine and I can’t wait to be a millionaire. Make it rain on all the people who doubted me. 🙂


Leyla Rad

The first thing that I like to tell people is that my last name is Rad. Yeah “that’s rad.” Good one, I’ve never heard that before. It wasn’t originally Rad. When my grandpa moved here from Iran, their last name was originally “Mohyeddin-rad.” At customs in the airport, I guess it was too long and difficult for people to pronounce so they changed it to just “Rad.” If you haven’t guessed already I am Middle Eastern. I was born and raised here in Florida. My mom moved here from Kuwait when she was eighteen and my dad moved here with his family when he was eight. My family is Muslim. But I’m not. I’m no religion. I believe in spirituality and believing in facts. There might be a higher power, I don’t know. That’s just the thing, no one knows. So I’d rather just believe in what I can prove.

I’ve played the flute since I was in fourth grade and I started playing the piccolo my freshman year of high school. Yes, I was in the marching band. Yes, I loved it. NO, I am not a weirdo band geek. I loved playing music and making beautiful sounds on and off that football field. I loved combining the chords and notes of each different instrument to make harmony that even un-musically talented people would get the chills hearing. Okay, maybe a little geeky but whatever. I like to be in charge and I like the feeling of people looking up to me. So my junior year I became one of the officers of the marching band. I was flute section leader. By my senior year I had moved up to Woodwind Captain and Sergeant, in addition to flute section leader.

I absolutely love clothes, shopping, and fashion. Which means I needed to get a job to support my expensive habits. I work at a clothing store in the mall called “Tillys.” Needless to say, my paycheck STAYS there. I also like to work out and I think nutrition is interesting.

I love writing, too, but my whole life I wasn’t pushed to do it. I took two AP English classes in high school and also a creative writing class. I would love to move to New York one day and do what I love- to write for a fashion magazine living in a cute little apartment that overlooks the city or Central Park. Maybe the journalism business doesn’t do as well as, let’s say, the medical industry, but if I’m doing what I love then it doesn’t matter what I make, as long as I’m happy.


George Rivera

I was originally born on the island of Puerto Rico and grew up learning Spanish and English at the same time. Eventually, the language that stuck with me was English. I soon became fascinated with the language, which led me to my love of reading, and then, writing. The little things about English interest me the most, the grammar the structure, and all the different styles out there, but my knowledge of those things have faded and I wish to renew that knowledge with this.

With interest in writing comes my interest in history itself, whether it is past events, present events, or possible future events, because I consider the events that happen today history in the making. Journalism allows me to write what history is happening today whether it be something tiny like a small-town team winning it big in some sports event, or something more along the lines of the Water-Gate scandal with former president Nixon.

I have chosen journalism as a major to broaden my understanding of the English language as a whole, and to better understand the different roles that need filling in journalism; not just writing, but design, social media, political analysis, and more.


Tiffany Rosario

Hello, my name is Tiffany. I am a major in communications for radio and TV and I would like to know all the behinds of what it takes to get into the radio and TV world. I have taken RTV before and that was fun, but it wasn’t for me and now I would like to see where I could get with the writing aspect of the major. This is my last semester at Seminole State and from here I will be transferring over to UCF even though I would really love to go to UF because I know they have a great broadcasting program over there, but unfortunately UCF is closer to home and work. I would really love to intern at either a radio station or a news station and see if it helps out with what exactly I would like to do in that field and hope that I could start my career where ever I intern.


Melissa Merkler

Hello friends. Thanks for stopping by. My name is Melissa B. Merkler.  I live in Sanford, Florida. Yes, unfortunately, it has become “that” Sanford. Alas, we will survive and take up our cross and carry on. I love my town and wouldn’t change it for anything.

I live on a small farm with my husband, my two-year-old daughter, 17-year-old part-time stepdaughter, and my father; along with our many silly animals, which include two miniature donkeys and numerous chickens and ducks. There are more but I won’t bore you with a laundry list of farm critters.

Enjoying school way too much has led me to become somewhat of a professional student. Currently I am dual-enrolled at Ashford University and Seminole State College.

I am taking “fun” classes at Seminole State while taking “serious” classes at Ashford pursuing a bachelor’s degree in English with a minor in Psychology.  In addition to my studies I am the editor in chief of The Seminole Scribe, the official college student newspaper of Seminole State College of Florida.

I have always enjoyed writing and proofreading which prompted me to take a journalism class. Well, that decision has opened some doors I never knew existed. Now my fun and serious classes have reversed completely changing my degree path. I think I might have found my calling in news reporting.

My fear of approaching strangers to drum up a conversation and overcoming glossophobia has been something I am being forced to improve. Each new interview gets me one step closer to an end of sweaty palms and “ums” between questions.

While I would not like to be in front of a video camera, my dream job would a reporter for NP, a traveling freelance writer or an editor for a science magazine.

As for hobbies, I have my hands in too many cookie jars. My passion lies in the arts, which began as a child with drawing Disney cartoon characters.  I dabble with many types of crafts such as painting, scrapbooking, jewelry making. But I have fallen in love with sewing and I think that is where I will plant myself.

My daughter has become my muse along with her 18’’ dolls. Check out my blog and follow me on Twitter.

There’s one more hobby that I am dying to revive. I consider myself a cemetery walker. It might sound morbid to some, but I love to stroll through cemeteries to read the headstones and relish in the history. I had a blog about my adventures but lost it in a Google crash that I was unable to restore.

I am a member of a free website called Find-a-grave. People submit requests for images of family gravesites. I go out and take pictures and upload them. It’s a nice way to do a good deed and have an excuse to visit the cemeteries.

Lastly, I’m active in my church and help with the children’s ministry. I grew up in the church and I want my daughter to have the positive experiences of knowing God and understand our beliefs. She impresses me daily with such things as counting “one, two, three, eight, nine” and saying “amen” after a dinner prayer! @melissabmerkler


Alicia Gonzalez

A Little About Me:

The name is Alicia. I am generally a soft spoken person and extremely shy. I believe my voice comes out strong through my writing, and that is how I can be heard. I didn’t always know what I wanted to study. I have changed my major about four times. I am finally back in school after six years. What can I say?!  It only took me ten years to get a two year degree! However, better late than never.

Why Journalism?

I was going through the job postings after a fallout at my previous job. Then I thought to myself, if only I could work for the Orlando Sentinel or even a magazine… If Only… That thought lingered in my mind, “but I need a degree.” So that is when the light bulb went off in my head and I decided to step foot onto Seminole State. I never dreamed that I would return to school, better yet, complete it. This time around, I know I will. I feel it has already changed my life. I strongly believe that if I earn my degree and do something amazing with my life–my four year old daughter will follow in my footsteps and do the same.

My Dream Job?

To be 100% honest, I do not know. I hope to figure it out along the way. One thing I do know is that I am going to chose something that makes me happy. That way when I look back one day, I will look back and smile. Thank you for reading! 🙂


My name is Carissa May, I’m 19, and I love photography. I’m taking Journalism because often times journalism and photography go hand in hand, and I decided it would be a useful skill to have. I got interested in photography when my family and I would go on road trips together. We took pictures to make memories, but for me, it soon became a passion. For nine and a half years I lived with my parents and two younger brothers in Papua New Guinea. It’s a country on the other side of the world, just north of Australia. We moved back to the U.S. in 2006 and have been living in Florida ever since. In 8th grade, my class took a field trip to the Florida Keys for a week, and I bought my first camera right before we left. that’s when I started taking pictures of anything and everything. In my senior year of high school I was on the yearbook staff. I enjoyed writing articles and working on the page layouts. I really hope that taking a class in journalism will help me improve my skills. My family and I have taken several road trips which have brought us to places like Washington D.C., Niagara Falls, Mount Rushmore, the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone National Park (twice), and various other places in the south and out west. This has given me a love for traveling as well as photography and writing. That’s why my dream job is to work as a photographer for National geographic. Hopefully I can get a career in photography that will take me to various places around the world. But for right now, I’m just working on getting an AA degree at Seminole State before transferring elsewhere for a degree in photography. Hopefully my journalism class will get me one step closer to being prepared for such a career.


John Nunez: I am bad at introductions, my name is to the left of this sentence.

My major is uncertain as so is my career and possibly class choice. I pride myself in staying true to my craft whilst saying I won’t sell out (however, I will most likely be the first sell out if the opportunity arises). I enjoy chocolate debaucheries, frivolous conversations and couch spelunking. For a brief time I ran a small blog called Disgruntled Office Workers that revolved around the mundane activities at my work place. This blog consisted of violent rants and illustrations as well as comparisons to co-workers to the cast of the TV show The Office. After the blog had circulated quickly among my workplace I had decided that it was time to put down my blog puppy before my boss (which I dubbed Michael Scott) took offense to it. I’ve worked mostly questionable freelance writing jobs, ones that for the sake of my reputation are not disclosed here. I wish I would have talked more about dragons in this brief bio. I hope everyone has stopped reading this by now. That is all. I am also sarcastic but only mostly in my bios.


Joseph Meadows

My first love in life is music.  First impressions of it were singing hymns with my father in church.  I started playing music formally at the age of ten and it’s been an obsession and love affair ever since.  I’ve performed in over thirty states, Canada and all over Europe.  I’m currently involved in three projects locally: a reggae/ska/rock band, Paddington Ambush; a soul/Motown style band called the Sh-Booms; and a New Orleans-style brass band which has yet to be named.

My second love in life is travel.  Being born and raised in Nowhere, Florida, I was eager to get out and see the wider world around me, a world full of wonderment and excitement.  Since I’ve been bitten by the “travel bug”, I’ve been to Europe almost every year since 2000.  My personal favorite spot in the world to travel is Barcelona.  Wonderful food, artwork (see Gaudi), architecture and people make it a truly international city with tons of flair and panache.

My third love in life is food.  I’ve told many friends that “I love everything, from nacho cheese to foie gras.”  I’m constantly curious and amazed at the ingredients and techniques involved in creating great dishes.  To me, it’s a well-forged ally between science and the arts.  Creativity meets technical abilities.

These are my passions


Joey Metych

I am one of the few.  The proud. No, not a Marine, but an Indiana Pacers fanatic.  I’m Joey Metych and I happen to probably be the only Pacers fan you’ll ever meet (we’re really an endangered species).  While Pacers pride seeps out of my pores, I love many different teams across various other sports.

I have had quite a few articles of mine published online ranging from mixed martial arts to sneaker care.  While this is my first actual journalism class, writing has always been a passion of mine and something I have excelled at throughout my life.  My hope while working on The Scribe is not only to improve as a journalist but to increase the quality and notoriety of our school’s newspaper.

Well, that’s enough about me for one day but don’t worry: you’ll be reading me in the near future.


Michael Brown

Lately I’ve found myself much like any other person in their early twenties: confused, directionless, and poor. Through my trials I’ve discovered a few things, even if there often are more questions than answers. I could tell you exactly when a man’s had too much to drink. I could tell you who you shouldn’t trust to drive behind the wheel (Chad. It’s always Chad.) But if there’s one talent I’ve discovered within myself, besides being very adept at being snarky, it’s been writing.

I first discovered my propensity for writing when I was in high school. When I went to Lake Howell High School, they imposed upon the students a new style of grading our writing style: having us type out an essay prompt before unthinking, unfeeling, careless , machines and seeing what we could produce. Our essay prompt for this was somewhere along the lines of “a friend who’s helped you.” I quickly discovered that this system had no ability to detect proper nouns or really validate the absurdity of any story submitted. And thus I devised a story about me and my personal best friend: Santa Claus. Santa Claus and I fought in Vietnam together, where he took out hordes of Vietcong forces. I related the tale of how his suit was originally pure white before it was drenched in the blood of his enemies. Now, this was back then I had long hair and a love of rebellion, so it didn’t surprise me when I caught the attention of the teachers. To my surprise, my teacher, rather than being appalled, informed the whole class of my art before forwarding it to many teachers around the campus. I’d become a minor celebrity, as students I’d never even met recognized my work. It wasn’t art, but it was a start.

Now I’m entering my third year at Seminole State, where once again I’m struggling to find ways to make it through another math or science course, but am hoping to find some solace in something where I’m at least mostly gauged upon by my writing. Thus far I have taken English, English II, Creative Writing, and Creative Writing II, and have befriended several of those teachers. It seems that my main skills lie within satire and opinion-based writing, as well as the borderline absurdist…although once I did write a mean Lovecraftian tale.

“Who do I want to be?” is a question that I often ask myself, and then the answer is obvious: Robert Downey Jr. Seeing as I lack any sort of acting skill or the man’s charisma (which I’m fairly certain that he sold his soul for,) then I’m forced to set the bar a little lower. After striking off “dictator,” “sexual deviant”, and “nothing”, I’ve found where my more practically-based aspirations lie: an editor for my favorite informative humor website,, or anything that lets me go to Europe. I’d also love to be Hunter S. Thompson. I haven’t the drug habit that that man lavished in, but damn it, I have time.

I thrive on controversy. Controversy is the main driving force behind dialogue. When someone says something that you don’t like, you have to sit and think about it, then argue a counterpoint. That’s how issues get discussed, and that’s how things change. I love controversy, which is why I’ll likely get in a lot of trouble in my future (hey, you’ve been warned.) But hey, if I don’t end up being able to make it in the professional world, I can always become Hunter S. Thompson.


My name is Sean Doty. I was born on Pearl Harbor Day in 1991. I have lived in Apopka my entire life and I graduated from Apopka High School in 2010 (Go Darters). Aside from being a Journalist for The Scribe, I am also a bartender at Orlando International Airport and a seasonal employee at Universal Studios. I am a major sports fanatic and I am a diehard Florida Gators fan. I enjoy all sports, but my main favorites are football, basketball and auto racing. Since I could start processing information as a child, I’ve always considered myself to be a competitive person. Whether it’s completing an assignment, pushing myself in the gym, or even a pickup game of football, I’m always determined to be the best and beat the competition. I guess you could consider me a science fiction nerd as well, since I consider Star Wars (original trilogy) to be the all-time greatest set of movies.  I have always had a love for writing, whether it is essays for school or just as a hobby. I had always envisioned myself doing commentary for a news station or writing for a national paper, but it wasn’t until my senior year in high school that I decided to pursue a degree in Journalism. I have dealt with many obstacles recently to get to this point of my life. From dealing with the emotional trauma of losing my father last year to overcoming a former obese lifestyle, it has not been the easiest road traveled. To this day however I have managed to shed nearly 100 pounds off my figure to get myself down to a healthy weight, I am currently taking on the “Insanity” challenge and I have recently earned my Associates Degree from Seminole State College. I have developed a new perspective on life and during my time working for The Scribe this semester, I hope to encourage others to follow their dreams and to never give up on them. I intend on transferring to the University of Florida in 2014 in hopes of earning a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Communications. My goal is to one day be a sports analyst for ESPN or to be a global reporter for ABC News.


Spring 2013

Ashley Campbell

Hello everyone my name is Ashley everyone calls me Squirt. Im 23years young a new student to Seminole State this is actually my last semester. I transferred from Bethune Cookman University. Im receiving my AA degree in English. I love to write, dance, & play sports. Im really good at writing poetry and choregraphing hiphop dancing which is something I do in my spare time. I have a five year old son name Tristen who means the world to me. After I graduate this semester, I plan on going to Ucf to receive my bachelor’s in Journalism and hope to someday work for some big magazine company.

Elisha Moleski

Hey-O! My name is Elisha Moleski. I am an aspiring Journalist, writer, and art enthusiast. I love to read, it’s my escape. But don’t get the wrong idea about me; I’m a thrill seeker and love the great outdoors! I perferr saddle up a horse, pick up a hiking stick, and/or surfing than sit in a chair and have a library book take me away.

It’s my last semester here at seminole state (tear) and I’m looking forward to what life brings after graduation. I’m looking to transferring to FAU in the fall of 2013 and earning a masters in Journalism. I don’t plan on spending all my time in Florida. There’s so much more out there than living in a ‘sandbox’ for the rest of my life.

I’m 25 years old, and I moved here about 10 years ago with my family, and I hope that one day you’ll be seeing my face on that box in your living room.. a.k.a. T. V. DREAM BIG! Life is made specifically for that.

Bryan Hohns

Hello my fellow JOU 1101 students, I’m Bryan Hohns. In the interest of self-indulgence and compliance, here’s a bit about myself: I was born in Maryland on May 1st, 1991. I moved away from Maryland with my parents when I was four, and as such my birthplace is nothing more than personal trivia to me. Shortly after moving to Florida, my parents divorced. My older (by one year plus one month) brother and I moved out of my father’s house with our mother. She ended up falling in love with and marrying the man who built our father’s house. Once I got to know the man, I couldn’t have asked for a better step dad, really; I had a great childhood. He treated Patrick (my brother) and I like we were his own sons.

My academic has been marked with potential and laziness. In my grade school years, I was more or less an awkward prodigy. I struggled with socializing and pretty much slaughtered school. This left much time for my younger self to develop interests; I tried karate, cross country, swimming, flag football, and basketball. Although I was a decent runner, it became apparent to me that I wasn’t a particularly gifted athlete. I was short*, scrawny and without naturally deft coordination.

My middle school years followed. My social awkwardness continued, but school began to demand more in terms of work, particularly grunt work. I got into video games at this point, possibly as a retreat from my problems. Said problems are all but history these days, but my love for games remains.

High school was…interesting, I guess. I went to Crooms Academy of Information Technology, in Sanford. This was significant because I lived (and still live) in Oviedo, which put me 45 minutes away. I eschewed convenience in the name of pursuing what I thought might end up a career in programming. I ended up taking programming and hating it; looking back on it, the best times I had in high school were in my senior yearbook course.

When high school was over, I realized two things. I came to the conclusion that I didn’t want to program for a living; programming was nowhere near as interesting as I imagined it would be, and instead was about as fulfilling and intuitive as Spanish/French classes were. I also became aware that I had no clue at all what I wanted to do with my life.

My lack of purpose did not aid my college cause at first. I floundered around for my first two semesters at Seminole State, pulling low marks and barely even showing up for class. It all just seemed so pointless at the time.

But that was then. Now, I’m on my way towards figuring out what to do with my wasted talents. Non-fictional writing and editing have always been passions of mine. With that in mind, I volunteered on the first week of class to fulfill the duty of copy editor, which I believe I will not only do well at but also enjoy.

To end a long blog before it gets even longer, I’ll stop here. I look forward to working with everyone and creating the best Seminole Scribe that we possibly can.

*I’m somewhere between a modest either way 5’7/5’8 now, and more or less all of my height came in my teen years. I used to actively worry that I would never break 5’0.


Sabira Mawji: Deja-vu with a Twist

Starting off the new year right, I signed up for Newspaper II because how else am I going to relieve my stress from taking a math and Spanish class this semester :O

When I get stressed, I look forward to just turning the page of the newspaper and smelling that fresh newspaper smell. Not turning on the news in TV because I have no interest in watching people read of a teleprompter…. (who wants that as a living?) I grew up challenging myself and it was either going to be journalism or law…. well we all know which one I obviously choose. Taking newspaper last year sort of turned me into a writer who never succumbs to a blank piece of paper from the results of “writers block”. I learned how to be:

Efficient, hard-working, diligent, objective, imaginative, daring, honest, myself

This year I’m back writing at The Seminole Scribe as the Editor now. Time to open up my grammar dendrites (took bio last year…. ruined my life) because grammar and I sometimes bump head to head with one another. However, I am looking forward to reaching out to my peers to help them get through this semester of interviewing complete strangers using in design like a pro (which is a work in progress within myself) learning how to use all those crazy editing symbols (Which I am learning in Newspaper Editing) Using a NUT GRAPH <—– the “boring part” of the article (in my opinion) The inverted pyramid well be your best friend on paper and more I suppose …..

I’m honored to be The Seminole Scribe’s Editor this semester because like in my last post last semester, I am done taking baby steps and moving on with toddler steps. It is my dream to be an editor in chief of a Newspaper one day. So  being editor this year will let me dab my foot in the harsh waters of journalism and see if I can handle this job to make it my career or see if I fail and just let my foot become all wrinkly. (did that make any sense? Trying to fight the cliche is so challenging. bleh.)

This semester, Seminole State is going to have the best six issues ever released on campus. We have a great and diverse staff this year and I can already imagine all the amazing articles that I will be able to edit 🙂 (EXCITING) @SabiraMawji


Sorangel Santiago

Hi Guys! My name is Sorangel. I am currently on my last semester at Seminole State. I will probably be going into UCF majoring in Journalism, though my dream is to finish my education in New York…I’m working on it! Writing has always been something I’ve loved to do though it wasn’t until my late teen years that I really became passionate about it. I have written short stories and movie reviews for my own entertainment.


I am so excited to be a part of The Scribe and to finally take a journalism class. I have been waiting for an opportunity like this for a very long time and hope that by the end of this semester my passion has grown and I become a better writer. The area I love the most about journalism is magazine journalism; When it comes to the world of entertainment, from movies to celebrities to books and music, I am a crazy huge fan. This is why my dream job would be to work for Entertainment Weekly magazine or People magazine.

On my own time, you will find me creating new cooking recipes, listening to music, watching movies, writing, reading magazines and on the internet either socializing on Facebook  reading any hot celebrity gossip or watching movie trailers.

I hope that this semester not only strengthens what I love about this profession, but brings me new friends and opportunities.


Brooklynn Holman

Hi everyone, my name is Brooklynn and this is my last semester at Seminole State! After I receive my AA degree, I hope to eventually graduate with an Advertising/Marketing degree at the University of Florida. Go Gators! Currently, I work at a children’s fitness center, My Gym, where I teach gymnastics and dance to kids 13 and under. I’ve worked there since 2010 and I can’t think of a better job for me right now!

Since I’m an Advertising/Marketing major, I’m taking Journalism and Photography this semester to get me started with a basic knowledge of blogging, photography, and publishing. In the future, I would like to design and create advertisements for large brands, and then eventually work up to having my very own (successful) advertising company! A girl can dream!


Ashley Collier

Hello, all! My name is Ashley Collier. I’ve been writing ever since I was young. Maybe 11 or 12 when my mom decided that I watched to much tv and banned me from it for a while. I had to find something else to do with my time, so I picked up a pencil and a notebook and just started writing. It was all downhill (or up hill, however you want to look at it) from there! I think my most notable writing memory was when I was in the 5th grade and a poem that I wrote, called “Swings” made it into the school newspaper. It was from that moment that I decided that I wanted to write for the rest of my life, be it professionally or just for me. I am never without a notebook and pen (or now, in 2013, my tablet or laptop) and I am always thinking of different stories and plots and things. In fact, if you go into my room and look under my bed, you will find a very large box snapped shut tight—it is filled to capacity with notebooks that I have filled up with stories every since I was young. So writing, quite literally, took over my life.

Writing also opened up the creative side in me—I like to paint, do web designs, Tumbler/Livejournal themes and all sorts of things. But when it came down to it, I realized I needed to do something with my writing that would make me some money when I got older. THAT is how I fell into journalism. I knew that people always needed to be informed: journalism was a profession that would never go out of style and would always be a thriving field. With this in mind, I signed up for the Journalism program here at Seminole State (granted, I went through a few other changes in my major before I finally ended up with this) and now I’m taking Journalism 1101 and HAPPILY doing some of the photography for the paper! I feel like I’m leaning more towards Photojournalism as far as my career goes and hopefully working for the Scribe will help teach me what it takes and hopefully open the door to my future in this field.


Fall 2012

Ambar Wessin: Came back for more!

Hi everyone!, you may think that by reading this you may not really get to know me but I think that with my writing skills you can! I was a staff writer/reporter for The Scribe (Seminole State College Newspaper) this past spring 2012; and decided to keep writing for The Scribe this fall 2012! I’m now the editor, and it is my honor to be the editor, because as an editor one can learn from reading the stories of others. I decided to come back because by far, writing for The Scribe has been the most rewarding experience I ever had. Let me tell you that writing for The Scribe is like having a real world job, and not any job, the job of a journalist! We have meetings discussing possible story ideas, and we make it happen (we take an idea and we do what it takes to put it on paper). There is so much I have learn in this class thanks to Ms. Sheppard, our faculty advisor, who is always on top of our stories, and that without her it would be impossible to get anything done. The spring 2012 staff became like a family and I hope this semester staff becomes like one too.

Why should you read about what I write?

Because I will never write something I wouldn’t read!, I have no doubt that my purpose in this life is to be a Journalist, and I can’t wait to become a full time Journalist like Ms. Sheppard. I just really love putting thoughts into words. I believe I got what it takes to be a Journalist. I’m humble and sweet but I can take over when you give me something to write on. For me a journalist most never talk nonsense and make every single word count and be truthful; Meaning that when writing as a Journalist, I don’t like including not a single word in a sentence if it doesn’t have relevance. I do not like to start writing a story until I have done research. It is important for a Journalist to have a good eye to disregard what information is less important. It takes a long time and patience to be able to go through all the information and then condense it.

Why I’m going for Journalism?

Any other job would have me doing the same thing every day like a robot, I don’t like to be in mode where you do something automatically, In Journalism one needs to think and use reasoning. Journalism gets the best out of me. I think Journalism is not for someone who is looking for a part time job; Journalism is for someone who is willing to take the time to cover all angles and wants the whole story. I want to be a Journalist because I put my whole heart when writing a story. My dream is to be a News Reporter on TV, because I think on TV a journalist may get to cover the full length of a story. I see myself writting for National Geography, talking about hardnews on TV, or doing any other form of Journalism. With Journalism, I could write about Global Warming one day, the next day write about Fashion, then politics, then health and I could go on and on because Journalism can cover all fields. And the best part about being a Journalist is that you meet different people for every different story you write. I love how I have met so many people by interviewing for The Scribe. Life is short and I came to realize that I have no purpose in this life if I can’t share with others my writing. That’s why my purpose is to publish my writing as much as I can. I want to shape the world in a positive way and use my writing as a medium of information.

A little bit more about me (my background):

Anyways… this is my last semester at Seminole State College and with The Scribe, to then transfer to UCF. I was born and grew up in the Dominican Republic, and when I was fourteen I moved to FL, where I have lived ever since. My whole high school and college years have been in the United States. My transition from one country to another required me to learn English. Learning a second language gave me skills that I can use for Journalism like: choosing carefully what words to use, paying attention to the tone and gestures of people talking other than what they are saying, go straight to the point when talking, to shut up and listen, to be open to learn new things, to observe more, and get the best out of experiences. @ambarwessin


Taryn Martin:

Hi; I’m Taryn Rose Martin.  I’m twenty-three years old (yes, really).  I love literature, chai tea lattes, and animals (especially my ACD-border collie Tuffi).  I also have a personal style and beauty blog that no one reads.

While most of my classmates seem assured that they’re going into journalism, I’d be lying if I told you I’m sure about, well, anything.  I’m not a journalism major.  I actually completed my “general” A.A. this summer but missed the deadline to transfer to UCF, so I’m taking this class as a “non-degree seeking transient student” in order to keep my brain from falling out of my ears from lack of use during a non-intentional semester off.

I do, however, have a curious mind and a love for writing, so this journalism thing might end up making sense for me after all.  I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up, but I suppose my absolute dream job would be as editor in chief of a fashion magazine.

Sincerely, Undecided

Cindy Villalobos

Hello everyone,

My name is Cindy Johanna Villalobos. Some random stuff about me is that I’m currently doing the P90x workout; I am trying to learn some Portuguese here and there. I can only say “there’s no toilet paper in my bathroom,” so that’s pretty good so far if I do say so myself. I am 18 years old. I live at home with my wonderful family that I love so much. I own a teacup Chihuahua that is my center of attention, her name is Barbie. I think my favorite color is orange; my car is a Chevy cavalier but I am hoping to get a Nissan Juke within a few months. I work in retail but am hoping to find a different job, maybe at a bank. I currently attend Seminole State but I am transferring to UCF by next semester. I am hoping to get into the Journalism program at UCF. One day I would like to work for a broadcasting news station one day as a reporter, I would prefer that over working at a newspaper. Far off thinking in the future, I would love to work on the Today show, I watch it almost every morning and I love it. I chose Journalism as my major because I love to watch the latest news, I love to write and I’m pretty decent at it. One of the things I’m hoping to get out of this class is to learn how to overcome that fear of interviewing people. Anyway, I hope you learned a little about me!

Mike Santagata

Hello, my name is Michael Santagata, but i prefer to be called Mike. I am 18 years old, born February 1, 1994. I am from Brooklyn, New York, in a neighborhood called Sheep’s Head Bay. I moved to Apopka, Florida, when I was about five years old to be able to spend some time with my dying grandmother, who, shortly after, succumbed to her cancer, and passed away. After my family and I moved into our own house, I attended Elementary school at Clay Springs Elementary. From there, I continued onto Piedmont Lakes Middle School, and later Wekiva High School. After a short time there, I transferred to Apopka High School. Around this time, I took up a large interest in photography, focusing mainly on scenery. However, since Apopka lacks any true scenery, I started doing portrait photography, and not just for people, as a lot of people have hired me to take pictures of their pets. Since I started, i’ve gained much experience in portrait photography, and while I loathed it in the beginning, I have grown to look forward to taking peoples portraits. I even purchased a high end DSLR camera, the Canon Rebel T3. I plan to apply my skills in photography and videography to my work in this Journalism class, and trust me, I’m a much better photographer than I am a writer. 🙂

Austin Rogers

I’m Austin Rogers, 18 years old from Orlando Florida. I was born in Atlanta Georgia but moved down here when I was 5. I had always had a love of sports and I have been an athlete since I was four. I started playing soccer but switched to baseball and played until I was sixteen. I have also had a passion for music, and not just listening to music but playing as well. I play guitar, bass, piano, drums and I am a vocalist. I’ll listen to almost anything from classical music to deathcore style music. I refuse to listen to country and most rap/ hip-hop music because I dislike it. I like to consider myself a optimist and generally a happy person. So that’s a little bit of me.   🙂

Sabira Juma: About “me’s” are so cliche.

Yea I could go ahead and tell you I was born in Houston but lived here in Florida for most of my life. And go on to bore you about where I go to school (Seminole State College), my major, (communications), what I like to do in my spare time (scribble words all over my paper) and go even into more detail of my personal life (like how I just got married and striving to balance my whole new life that encompasses a spiderweb type map with no directions, is the greatest challenge of my life).

But I’ll rather not tell you.

How I draw the mental picture to be either a famous newspaper editor one day or to even have my own column. But it ll starts with one step at a time.

Therefore the only thing left I don’t want to tell you

How I plan on taking everything I learn in this class with me to help me take those further steps to reaching my dream.

But no really,

Writing is one of my passions and I am very excited to join the Seminole Scribe and working along with my classmates. I have no doubt that “The Scribe” will be very irresistible this semester and everyone will be talking about each issue, story, article, and picture. Looking forward to a great semester at The Scribe. @sabiramawji

Who is Danielle Wiebe?

My name is Danielle Wiebe and I have graced this earth for 21 years. I was born in St. Louis, Missouri, but I call Orlando my home. I graduated from Lake Howell in the summer of 2009. I started my first semester at Seminole State College of Florida in the fall of 2009.  During my last year of high school is when I finally decided what I wanted to do with my life, and that is to write. I want to write anything and everything. My ultimate goal is to be an editor-in-chief of a magazine. I am more interested in the photojournalism aspect of things, but writing is something I have always done, enjoyed, and have been told I am good at.

I have spent most of my 21 years of life feeling lost and wondering if all the puzzle pieces of my life will eventually come together as I have planned. Creative thoughts fill my mind. Buddhism encompasses my soul. Body modifications cover my skin. While I am still a work in progress, I aspire to be a person that will inspire others to follow their dreams and have the strength to overcome any obstacles they will face in their lifetime. I have been through so much in my short time of living, but I have managed to overcome all the things that tried to break me. I have used writing and art as a catharsis to overcome my struggles. After 21 years, I have an amazing story to tell and I plan to tell it all one day. @Otherworldlyx

Ashley Vazquez

My name is Ashley Vazquez and I was born in Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico. I came to live in Florida when I was ten years old with my mother and my sister. I have always been curious as a child and that is a trait that is still with me. I love to read and write, although, reading is somewhat of a passion for me. I want to be a Journalist because I love to read and write, and hopefully I would be able to go into book publishing when I graduate. My goal is to become an editor for one of the top publishing houses here in the United States or in Europe. I want to be able to bring people new books in different genres to read and enjoy. @AshleyVazquezCo

Michael Tennant

I spent this morning thinking about the stories we have begun work on for The Seminole Scribe. Stories, not articles, reviews, or commentary, but stories. Everyone has a story that they need to tell. Not want to tell but actually need to tell. That is important in a really big way. The urgency of that need creates something so vibrant and special that it resonates with each of us. I look forward to sharing great stories with each of you. I hope when you pick up Seminole State’s newspaper you will be proud of what you see within the pages. @mtennant71

Ashley Crooke

My name is Ashley Crooke. I am two decades old. I am a native of Central Florida who hopes to one day escape the suburbs. I am without a doubt a dreamer and a free spirit. I have been a vegetarian for 7 years. I am a lover of animals, coffee, and Star Wars. I prefer past decades when it comes to things like fashion, beauty, and objects. This shows most in my taste in music since it is centered around the 1950’s through the early 1980’s. I have an extensive record collection of over 300 and counting and I listen to them all on a regular basis. But, I do enjoy some current music (especially heavy metal) every once in a while. \m/

I have been attending Seminole State since July of 2010. I spent a year as an interior design major, then realized my potential was not being fulfilled, nor was I fully satisfied with the direction my education was going. From this point, I looked into other possibilities. I have always been an avid writer, but photographs are where my talent really shines through. Photography was always a hobby of mine, but became a passion in high school. I remembered my high school photo teacher mentioning photojournalism to me, so I took another look at it. My decision was made. I have never been so sure of anything in my life. This is where I am meant to be. My absolute dream job would be to work for National Geographic. I hope to bring some insight and wonderful photos to the Seminole Scribe this year. @AshCrooke

Kimberley Lewis: It’s Seminole State, not SSC!

My name is Kimberley, and as far as journalism is concerned, I’m an infant with a tape recorder. After studying the education system and teaching for the last three years only to decide that children are horrible and selfish beings, I have switched majors to become a hard hitting reporter. I was opened to this field through a creative writing course at Seminole State, where I was deemed “The Red Pen Queen” by my peers for my thorough critiques of their work, as well as my open desire for facts and realism in their creative outlets. Through middle and high school my passions geared toward teaching English composition, but instead I decided to live it. My passion for this course has already begun in writing my first article, and I anticipate the in depth investigating so near in my future.

Spring of 2012

Stephanie Alvarez

I am Colombian by ethnicity, but I have lived in Orlando, Fla. all my life. I grew up with my mom and older sister. My dream as a child was to become an actress. As I grew up, I gained a passion for telling stories. I am now in my second year at Seminole State College majoring in Communications and Broadcasting. One day I will become a News Reporter covering entertainment on E News! My goal in life is to travel more than one can imagine. I love to meet new people because everyone has a story to their name. @StephanieAlva34

Jarred Paluzzi

I was born in Winter Park, Florida. Graduated from Lake Mary High School in 2009. I attend Seminole State College studying Photo Journalism. I’m currently finishing up my A.A. here at SSC and will be attending UCF in the fall 2012. After I hope to further my studies in New York or California. I enjoy photography and soccer. @itssJarred

Joshua Glener

A life confides meaning within awareness; people like me attempt to always be aware as progresses. Social awareness is my strongest trait, giving me the ability to alter perspectives. My journey in this world so far has left me with a wealth of stories to recount, not all originating from my own experience, but as a writer I believe my duty is to always observe. Being socially conscience I will remain firmly on the ground with the common man but I remain mindful of the possibilities to influence and impact the world. I realize the most important reason of why I am here on this Earth is to be aware and inform all others who will listen and allow others to become aware through any form of communication. “Getting laid,” remains a strong second reason. @JoshJournalism

Zachary Ely

I was born in Oaklawn, IL, my family is originally from IN, we moved to FL when I was 6 years old. In grade school I attended Longwood Elementary where my mother taught. After that I attended Jackson Heights Middle School and Oviedo High School.

After graduating, I joined the United States Army and served as an Airborne Ranger at B company 3/75th Ranger Regt. Ft. Benning, GA. I was severely injured in a training accident parachuting. I was Honorably Discharged from the Army.

My college training started at Seminole State College of FL with EMT/Firefighter in which I earned certificates in both. I recently earned my A.A. and graduated class of 2011.

I am attending this semester at Seminole State as a Junior to add to my resume in the hopes of being accepted to the Nicholson School of Journalism at UCF. I will be starting at UCF this summer, regardless. @zach_ely

Ambar Wessin

I was born in the Dominican Republic. I moved to Florida when i was fourteen years old, where i have lived ever since. I attended Lake Brantley High School for my freshman and sophomore year. For my junior and senior year i went to Lyman High School. I’m currently attending Seminole State College. I’m planning on transferring to UCF and become a News Reporter. My major is journalism and I’m super excited to be one of the editors of The Seminole Scribe.

Yngrid Lindores

I am Venezuelan and Trinidadian. I’ve lived in florida for most of my life. I am currently attending Seminole State College (Go State!) to earn my A.A. I love being in the know and want to help others do the same. @yngridlindores


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