UHD Students Engage in Weekly Critical Talks on FOX26
By Sam Byrd
The University of Houston-Downtown is a place where learning takes place not just in the classroom but also through interactions with people who bring a diversity of opinions and experiences. Learning to engage in thoughtful, respectful dialogue is a central tenet of higher education that UHD holds dear.
With such a dynamic and engaged student population, FOX26 has tapped several UHD students to take part in intellectual discourse with its "Your Take" segments, airing on Friday mornings. In these panels, students and community members share their views on current events and topics. Two students shared their experience about taking part in these segments: Master of Nonprofit Management student Shay Tatum and Criminal Justice major Sam Mosley.
Tatum expressed her enthusiasm to join the discussion.
"I relish when they called me and asked me to be a part of the panel. I think of it as a way for people to see me and hear my point of view from my personal and cultural experiences. I always appreciate FOX26 for having a diverse group of people who are able to have genuine conversations in the way that we live," she said. "I also am grateful to this media outlet for being so open and diverse with the panel and for involving students to get their perspective on each topic. I love the format."
During Tatum's panel on Sept. 18, she discussed restaurants opening to 75 percent capacity.
"The funny part is what happens behind the scenes is not always what makes it on television. [During the break,] we had robust conversations between the restaurant owners and business owners like myself, and we talked about what we thought about [establishments] being open at 75 percent capacity," added Tatum, who owns the hair salon Shaylons Retreat.
She also voiced her experience regarding the coronavirus during her time on air.
During the interview, she said, "Someone in my household [has] a pre-existing condition. If I go out to a restaurant, I'm just having a good time with my friends; but if the person next to me has COVID-19, and I come back and give it to my husband...with his condition, he may or may not make it. It's a big concern for me because I do not want to be an unknown carrier...and pass it to someone else because I was eating a burger."
Like Tatum, Mosley expressed her excitement to participate in the panel.
"UHD has more than 15,000 students. For you to be picked out of that large of a pool is an honor," she said.
Mosley also spoke about a COVID-19 related topic during her panel on Sept. 25 when the group discussed whether or not to take children trick-or-treating for Halloween. Mosley, who was featured in a September Student Spotlight, lost one of her children to an aggressive virus and lives with an immunocompromised person. She shared her thoughts about how she plans to stay safe during the Halloween festivities and still make the day fun.
"For me, the risk doesn't outweigh the reward. I can't verify the safety standards the person distributing the candy has practiced. For me, I'd rather do something fun and creative at home and use that as a bonding experience with my child," she said during her interview. "I'm really creative. I might opt to do a scavenger hunt around the house. I'll make him go find the candy in hidden places to make it a thrill, but I'm just not ready to let him go out door to door. I think it's too risky."
Both students are sharing what many UHD Gators learn through their university experience - the ability to express their meaningful thoughts through critical conversations.
More UHD students will appear in the next few weeks for the Friday morning segments, which will also be posted on the FOX26 website.
Editor's note: SGA President will be featured on the Oct. 7 FOX26 newscast at 9:30 p.m. following the Vice Presidential Candidates debate.