The Best New And Upcoming Website For Aggies: UCDiscourse

The Best New And Upcoming Website For Aggies: UCDiscourse

SmartSite is overrated... Schedule Builder is slow.... Forget Piazza. And how many websites can one school expect you to visit for essentially one piece of a collection of similar information? Well, finally, Aggies your solution is here. And it's called UCDiscourse.


UC Davis prides itself on the saying: One World, One UC Davis... And yet, why can't there be one website to locate all of your academic data?! There is My UC Davis, Schedule Builder, SmartSite, major websites, and myriad others. Trying to find a class these days can be an unnecessarily tedious task by the time you check which course you need to complete for your major, locate the checklist to see if it fulfills any other requirements, add it on Schedule Builder, go to Rate My Professor, etc. Well, UC Davis community, life just got a whole lot easier. How? Simple: UCDiscourse.com.

Two second year computer science majors, Minu Palaniappan and Andy Haden, with the help of the ASUCD entrepreneurship fund, came together and developed an easy-to-access website that encompasses all the resources a UC Davis student could ever need. This website allows students to check graduation status in regard to the checklist of GE and major requirements (including the topical breadth/core literacy requirements), view an enrollment graph and grade distribution of each class, build a schedule and manage conflicts, compare professors at Davis teaching the course you would like to take, and compare textbook prices.

In addition to all these proficient features, there are even more on the way. Some ideas that Minu and Andy are still discussing and hope to see in the future include: being able to share your schedule with friends, campus map that shows where classes are, texting features, and integrating Khan Academy. UCDiscourse is essentially a convenient search engine and discovery tool that centrally focuses on the success of each and every student individually in the midst of such a large body of scholars.

"We want to build a community around this website," said Minu. "We want Discourse to be the number one destination for course navigation. Discourse is run by students, and as a result, there is a more personal connection. There are no restrictions from the school or faculty that are stopping us from building awesome features. For example, Discourse plans to add texting notifications for users who want to know if classes are filling up or if pass time is coming up. The school doesn’t have the time, funds, or resources to build any of this. It's on us, students, to make the changes."

And UCDiscourse means what it says. Discourse wanted to investigate the impact Katehi had on the school textbook system in regard to Wiley (the publisher she moonlighted for). In its search for textbook data, the numbers indicated that Wiley was one of the most involved publishers on campus, legitimizing the concerns many had over Katehi's actions. While many people focused on Katehi's direct actions, UCDiscourse investigated the scene to find out just how much it impacted the students, adding clarity to the situation's ramifications to our community. To read more about this check out the article.

The academic environment created by UC Davis has cultivated confusion among a majority of students. UC Discourse is here to fix the severe issues that make it difficult to navigate through a major. This is the first complete service, for the students brought to you by the students.

Cover Image Credit: ucdiscourse.com

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He Changed Everything.

My soul is richer & my heart is fuller 

Sept 2013 I found myself writing to an evangelist Jennifer Beckham looking for more, looking for answers cause at the time I was in a dark place, and stuck no matter what I did. She wrote back! I cried as I read her respond. She sent me scriptures of who god is and what he wants for us. God says we are more than conquers and endurance develops strength and character. She encouraged me that I was on the right track. Not to give up and she would be praying for me. I saw Jennifer Beckham at a conference that year. I don't remember what she specifically talked about but I remember the feeling. The feeling of wanting to burst out crying, I could feel my eyes being filled with tears, and my heart racing but I wouldn't let out the tears. My pride was too big. I wanted to be strong so I did my best to hold it all in, and I did. At this conference they offered the audience who wanted to go up for prayer and dedicate their life to Jesus Christ. Surprisingly I went up, but I went up with other people that were seeking out salvation. I wasn’t sure if I was going up to support the other people or if it was truly for me. I was confused, even though I said the prayer. I became more confused as the days went on and I wasn't feeling a difference in my life. Nothing was changing. I started reading the bible and many books, listening to sermons, and surrounding myself with positive people. I gave my life to Jesus, but I didn't feel like I was set FREE! I continued feeling empty, lost, broken, guilty, and hurt from the past. There were so many days where I just wanted to give up. Almost felt pointless to fight for my life. At this point in my life I didn't know God very much, but I had just a little bit of faith. My faith was a big as a mustard seed and God took care of the rest. Day by day, year by year I started noticing my life changing. I noticed I was changing. I started feeling happy with who I was and where I was in life. I no longer questioned God about the things that happened to me. In my heart I was ok with the wounds, the hardships, and trials from the past because I now understood those wounds and trials. I realized I was SET FREE! not perfect but set free. I started understanding who I was as a child of our heavenly father. Now it’s Jan 2018 and I’m in awe of who I am and where I am in life, all because of Jesus. His so faithful! I think of the favor, the grace, his mercy, his love, his joy and blessing that he gives me even when I’m undeserving of it, it’s overwhelming. He has never left me nor forsake me. I can say Jesus you changed everything and my heart so forever thankful. 

Today, I encourage you like Jennifer Beckham encouraged me. Keep going and don't give up. No matter what your past looks like believe in your heart that you were created for greatness. Don't let your past determine your future, be the change you want in your life. You have it in you. There is so much more to life, don't miss out on it. It's time to take back your happiness, love, joy, freedom and so much more. It's time to take back EVERYTHING the enemy has taken from you. God has made you an overcomer. I speak it right now, that you will be victorious in 2018 and the years to come. Remember, God loves you! 

Psalm 136:26 (AMP) O give thanks to the God of heaven, for his mercy and loving-kindness endures forever!

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Oprah Winfrey Running For President?

Golden Globe speech sparking some ideas.

As of Sunday, January 7, 2018, Oprah Winfrey made a few remarks during her Golden Globe speech, hinting to her possibly running for president in 2020. Later, two of her friends, who wish to remain anonymous confirm this speculation. One of the friends said that this idea has been looming for months now but that Winfrey did not come to a conscience yet.

The main point of Winfrey's speech at the Golden Globes was the #MeToo movement. She also made a statement of, "A new day is on the horizon", which many liberal celebrities and viewers heard as a possible campaign cry.

At the moment, there is no serious talk right now about her running for president, but some of her fans have voiced their opinions through Twitter and Facebook after she had her speech. Along with her fans, her long time partner, Stedman Graham also mentioned that her running for president was a possibility

However what Winfrey does not have is political experience. When she needs political advice she looks to the Obamas and she fully endorsed Hillary Clinton. We may have our next Democratic candidate for the 2020 election. Although the race for president does not start until after the 2018 midterms, many candidates are getting a head start. Maybe this is her making her first move. What do you think? Will America choose another TV star as our president?

Cover Image Credit: Wikimedia

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