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Midwest, East Coast survive ‘Snowpocalypse’

Posted by Chris Vannini on February 12, 2010

Snow piles up on MSU's campus. Despite a blizzard dubbed "Snowmageddon" and "Snowpocalypse," students were unhappy to learn classes hadn't been cancelled.

MSU Landscape Services’ headquarters looks less like an office and more like a command center when a snowstorm is on its way.

“Our favorite channel this time of year is The Weather Channel,” said Gerry Dobbs, MSU’s landscape manager of 30 years.

Landscape Services oversees the collaboration between several MSU departments to facilitate snow removal on campus. MSU Police and Custodial Services assist with this process.

“These guys are really great to work with,” Dobbs said. “They know that 40,000 people are depending on them and they’re not going to let them down.”

Three emergency response teams are called in during storms to ensure campus stays open and safe for students, faculty and visitors. Dobbs says the teams are very efficient— regardless of the severity of the snowfall.

Workers are maintaining about 50 miles of roadways and 100 miles of sidewalk this year. At six cents per square foot of snow removal, the teams work quickly and efficiently to get the job done.

“A lot of people actually prefer to cut through campus during big storms,” Dobbs said.

Landscape Services also coordinates with roofers on campus to prevent injuries from falling icicles.

“We’re constantly on the look-out for safety concerns on campus,” Dobbs said.

Jim Delinescheff, a Landscape Services group leader on North Campus, has been on the front lines of snow removal at MSU for 35 years. The fact that campus hasn’t closed for snow in 25 years is a testament to how well the workers do their jobs, he said.

“When you talk about the campus, it’s a city,” Delinescheff. “We’re really dealing with the same situations as any city. Only we do it better.”

Hot spots on campus, such as intersections, the main library, the Wharton Center andBreslin Center, are pre-treated with salt water to decrease reaction time when road salt is spread. MSU is one of the few schools in the country that produces its own salt brine treatment.

Last year, the University purchased about $130,000 of salt from Detroit Salt to use on roads, sidewalks, parking lots and ramps.

Chris Vannini, Lanie Blackmer, Jayna Salk, Jim Seguin


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MSU junior fills room with strange pets

Posted by Chris Vannini on February 5, 2010

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Button Bonanza

Posted by Chris Vannini on February 5, 2010

The University Activities Board hosted its biweekly Arts & Crafts night Wednesday at The Union. This week’s theme was buttons.

Participants could create 2-inch or 1-inch buttons out of provided supplies or bring their own.

UAB provides safe alternatives to typical college parties.

To see more of my work, check out my page.

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Students talk about new Apple iPad

Posted by Chris Vannini on January 29, 2010

Apple recently introduced the iPad, a tablet computer that some believe could replace modern laptops. But some MSU students don’t see the purpose of the device.

To see more of my work, check out my page.

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Swirlberry entices students with healthy alternatives

Posted by Chris Vannini on January 29, 2010

Swirlberry opened in October as a healthy alternative to ice cream. Despite opening when the weather was cold, business for Swirlberry has been successful and only expects to improve when the weather warms up.

Swirlberry sells frozen yogurt that comes in several different flavors from mango fruit to cookies and cream. But another unique aspect about Swirlberry is the numbers of available toppings that customers can put on their own yogurt. Toppings include: Oreos, strawberries, golden grahams among many more.

Swirlberry has locations in Ann Arbor, Mich., and West Bloomfield, Mich., with locations opening soon in neighboring midwestern states.

To see more of my work, check out my page.

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Practice Interview – Chris Vannini

Posted by Chris Vannini on January 28, 2010

I talked with packaging sophomore Jim Garvey and got his thoughts about the men’s basketball team’s season thus far.

To see more of my work, check out my page.

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Chris Vannini Sequence – Book Return

Posted by Chris Vannini on January 26, 2010

Book returning is common among MSU students. After spending hundred of dollars on (mostly) useless textbooks, some students discover they don’t need some of their books so they return them. This sequence takes place outside Spartan Bookstore.

To see more of my work, check out my page.

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Chris Vannini Biography

Posted by Chris Vannini on January 22, 2010

Chris Vannini
I am a journalism junior (actually a senior due to credits) but I hope to graduate in a year. I am from Troy, Mich. My house is down the street from Somerset Mall, which is a place every kid in Michigan seems to know.

I went to Seaholm High School in Birmingham, Mich., where I played ice hockey and participated in the marching band.

Currently, I am the men’s basketball reporter for The State News. I began writing for the State News in the fall of 2008. I started off as an intern that fall and became the student government reporter that spring. I joined the sports desk and was offered my dream job when I became football reporter in the fall of 2009. Being able to cover my favorite team alongside reporters who worked their whole life to get in the same situation was something I could never have imagined. This spring, I’ve been the men’s basketball reporter and it’s been just as enjoyable. My job has me working more than 35 hours a week and I get to miss out on the typical college experience because I’m so busy, but I wouldn’t trade my situation for anything in the world. I have one sibling, a younger brother who is enjoying his freshman year at MSU. My family has one dog, a white German shepherd whom I miss a lot. I always like wrestling with my dog. He loves to bite but he knows to just gnaw so it’s a lot of fun.

I have a girlfriend whom I met at the State News when she was in the same intern class as me. She’s also a journalism major and has been freelancing for City Pulse in Lansing recently.

My dream job was to cover a sports team as a beat for a newspaper but with that position dwindling, I’m just hoping to find some sort of job covering sports. I am also going for a public relations specialization and another possible job opportunity would be a PR job in the field of sports. What I hope to get out of this class is refining my online skills over various mediums and to sharpen my skills to help my chances of getting a job in the future.

To see more of my work, check out my page.

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