• Your one stop for college news and resources!

Brittney Elkins

Flesh eating bacteria continues to ravage Georgia student’s body

Aimee Copeland is fighting for life and limb

The flesh eating bacteria that claimed Aimee Copeland’s leg after a zip lining accident two weeks ago is spreading to other areas of her body.

Aimee Copeland has a rare condition called necrotizing fasciitis, often referred to as a flesh eating bacteria. Aimee, a 24 year-old Georgia graduate student, is now awake and alert but still in critical condition. According to her father, her fingers will have to be amputated as well.

Her family has also said that she can’t remember the events that led to her run-in with the flesh eating bacteria and that landed her in the hospital for the past two weeks and the amputation of one of her legs.

Aimee’s family is keeping a blog to inform people about her stay in the hospital. According to her family, the flesh eating bacteria has killed the blood vessels in Aimee’s hands and her remaining foot, and while more amputations are necessary, they are hoping the palms of her hands will survive.

Aimee regained consciousness to mouth the words, “Where am I?” on Friday.

Copeland is listed in critical condition at Doctors Hospital in Augusta, Georgia. Her father describes his daughter’s conditions as “without a doubt the most horrific situation that a parent can possibly imagine,” he wrote on her university blog that “Aimee is awake, understand everything and is nodding her head to questions!” She “is still on her life support, and we are waiting to hear more about how she is doing today.”

Recent reports claim that the flesh eating bacteria infection has spread to Copeland’s remaining foot and hands and that she will lose all of them. Her father went on WSB-TV and said, “I couldn’t conceive of what it would be like for my daughter to lose her hands and the only other foot she has, as well, and that appears to be what is going to happen. The most important thing is my daughter is still alive.”

Aimee contracted the flesh eating bacterial after riding a homemade zip line near the Little Tallapoosa River on May 1. The line snapped and caused Aimee to fall and cut open her left calf. Doctors closed the gash with 22 staples, but the flesh eating bacteria that burrowed deep into the wound caused the rare but deadly infection Aimee is suffering from now.

The flesh eating bacteria is called Aeromonas hydrophila, and it thrives in warm climates and fresh water like the Little Tallapoosa River.

While the government estimates roughly 750 flesh-eating bacteria cases each year, typically caused by a type of strep germ, the flesh eating bacteria afflicting Aimee is even rarer. One expert knew of only a few reported cases over the past few decades.

The flesh eating bacteria can not get on the surface of the skin and burrow into your body. But, cuts and gashes, especially deep ones, are open doors for bacteria.

The National Necrotizing Fasciitis Foundation recommends frequent hand-washing and immediate medical treatment for wounds. They also recommend limited contact with anyone who has a strep infection.

The CDC stresses that the chance of contracting necrotizing fasciitis is rare.

Blood drives are being run in Aimee’s honor. Her family has set up a PayPal account and has requested monetary donations instead of flowers and gifts to help with hospital and potential rehabilitation bills.

Jay-Z is in a Philly state of mind

Jay-Z announces the Budweiser Made in America festival in Philadelphia

Jay-Z announced a two-day music festival in Philadelphia Monday.

Jay-Z stood atop the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the staircase made famous by Rocky Balboa, next to Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter to announce the Budweiser Made in America festival.

The festival will feature nearly 30 acts across three stages at Fairmount Park on September 1 and 2, Labor Day weekend.

“It’s such an iconic place, so it felt like a natural fit,” Jay-Z told the Associated Press after the news conference. “You’ll get to come out and have two great days, listen to some amazing music and discover some new bands.”

The lineup for the festival will be announced Monday, May 21, so Jay-Z wasn’t able to talk about any of the acts. However, Jay-Z did confirm in the press conference that 70 percent of the acts have already been confirmed.

Jay-Z told Rolling Stone that he would “absolutely” ask President Obama to attend the festival and maybe do a rendition of Al Green, but he added, “I think that opens up the political season. He’ll be so far into helping the world that he probably won’t have time, but I’m absolutely going to ask him.”

The artists who do perform at the Budweiser Made in America festival were chosen because they “embody the American spirit.” Jay-Z himself will headline the first night of the festival, and we’ll bring you more about the lineup when it has been announced.

Tickets for Made in America will go on sale May 23.

Mitchell Guist, Swamp People star, dies in Louisiana

Passes away after seizure on the bayou

Mitchell Guist, a star of the TV show Swamp People, died Monday in Louisiana.

Mitchell Guist was pronounced dead at the hospital after having an apparent seizure and falling on his boat. It is unclear whether the seizure was the result of the fall or a medical condition.

According to Assumption Parish Sheriff Mike Waguespack, another man who was with Mitchell Guist in the boat towed both his boat and Mitchell Guist’s boat back to the landing and called 911. The man also performed CPR.

Swamp People, which airs on the History Channel, follows several Cajuns through their daily lives on the bayous of Louisiana where they hunt alligators for a living.

Mitchell Guist and his brother, Glenn Guist, were partners in the alligator hunting business. According to their bio on history.com, “Glenn and Mitchell Guist were born and raised on the bayou and lived entirely off the land. These brothers were always up to something, whether it was hunting for their dinner or making use of everything nature has to offer.”

The History Channel released a statement Monday on their website to convey their sympathy for the Guist family.

“We are extremely saddened to report that our friend and beloved member of the Swamp People family, Mitchell Guist, passed away earlier today. Mitchell passed on the swamp, doing what he loved. We appreciate your respect for the Guist family’s privacy and hope you join us in sending our thoughts and prayers to his brother, Glenn, and the rest of the Guist family.”

Of the 20 cast members of Swamp People listed on the show’s page on history.com, several are family members, but Glenn and Mitchell Guist are the only two pictured together and that share a biography.

Each season, Swamp People focuses on five teams of alligator hunters. Although the show is primarily about alligator hunting, episodes often feature other aspects of social and family life on the bayou.

Reese Witherspoon's parents in bigamy battle

Mom is taking dad to court to protect her family

Reese Witherspoon’s parents, Mary Elizabeth “Betty” and John Witherspoon are taking their family issues to court.

A bigamy battle has launched between Reese Witherspoon’s parents, and it’s getting ugly.

Betty Witherspoon says John Witherspoon can’t be married to Tricianne Taylor—a woman with whom John appeared in a wedding announcement in The Tennessean.

Reese Witherspoon’s parents are apparently still married, and Betty Witherspoon insists she is still in love with her husband and does not want to divorce him.

Now, Betty is seeking to have the second marriage annulled. She believes Tricianne Taylor is trying to take advantage of John Witherspoon in order to gain marital assets. Betty has indicated that John is suffering from early on-set dementia.

“When I confronted my husband, he said he didn’t know who Tricianne Taylor was and he did not remember getting married,” Betty said in the affidavit, “I also fear for my husband’s personal safety and the safety of my family.”

The filing also alleges that Taylor has tried to take out loans as Mrs. John Witherspoon, lives in his condo (which is owned by Reese) and has had him sign a new will.

As Reese Witherspoon’s parents figure out the details of the debacle in court, the actress is expecting her third child. Reese Witherspoon has not commented publicly on her parents’ troubles, but when Reese Witherspoon was married to talent agent Jim Toth in California last year, Tricianne Taylor was refused entry.

Reese Witherspoon’s parents will appear in court May 31 to untangle the knots in this twisted love triangle.

Russell Brand will host the 2012 MTV Movie Awards

Let the mayhem begin

Russell Brand is set to host the 2012 MTV Movie Awards June 3.

Russell Brand hosted MTV’s Video Music Awards in 2008 and 2009, and now, with Russell Brand taking leading roles in films such as Rock of Ages, which hits theaters next month, the comedian is ready to move into the milieu of movie awards.

“This MTV Movie Awards will be more impressive than The Avengers, and you won’t have to wait an hour for someone to Hulk out,” Russell Brand said Thursday.

Russell Brand being Russell Brand, he didn’t stop there with his comments about hosting the awards.

“MTV Movie Awards incorporates two of my favorite things. Movies and Awards. If somehow group sex could be involved it would be the greatest night of my life,” Russell Brand said of the gig.

President of MTV Stephen Friedmen said of the decision, “With his amazing ability to span the full spectrum of comedy from the most high to lowbrow, Russell’s smart, unpredictable wit uniquely connects him to our audience. His rock-n-roll sensibility and fearlessness give us the perfect partner with whom to take a leap of faith with as we meld the worlds of movies and music together on one very special night.”

Russell Brand is very likely to say or do some unexpected things. In fact, the first image that comes to mind is a little kid with a water hose pointed straight at his parents. You want to say, “You better not,” but he’s going to do it regardless. The question is not if Russell Brand will do something outrageous, but when, and to what extent, and at whose expense.

Past hosts include Aziz Ansari, Andy Samberg, Ben Stiller, Mike Myers, Justin Timberlake, and Sarah Silverman joined this apparent boys club once, too.

Blockbusters and the critically acclaimed films of the past year resonated with the MTV audience, so this year’s MTV Movie Awards will include nominees such as Drive, The Descendants, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Hunger Games and Bridesmaids.

Other stars that will grace the stage this year are Emma Stone, Kristen Stewart, and Mark Wahlberg to name a few.

Brand will most likely take this opportunity to plug his new show Brand X, which is set for a June 28 premier on FX, and his upcoming film Rock of Ages. But will he crack any jokes about his recent divorce from Katy Perry? It’s more likely that he’ll leave that broken relationship out of his bit, but if he does reference the ordeal, it will hopefully be at his own expense, avoiding low-blows to his ex.

Zuckerberg hoodie causing a stir on Wall Street

Is it disinterest or disrespect?

Mark Zuckerberg wore a hoodie to an investor’s meeting, and people were shocked.

Two seconds on Google would have prepared the investors for the Zuckerberg hoodie.

This is the man who wore pajamas to a meeting, and it was depicted in a Hollywood film. This is the man who wears jeans to meet the president. But Wall Street has higher expectations, and Michael Pachter, an analyst with Wedbush Securities, was quoted as saying, “He’s actually showing investors he doesn’t care that much; he’s going to be him. I think that’s a mark of immaturity.”

And now opinions are flying around the internet as to whether or not the signature Zuckerberg hoodie is disrespectful to the straight-laced bankers of Wall Street, or if it’s symbolic of Zuckerberg’s refusal to bow to whatever Wall Street expects, or if it was even a conscious choice.

Facebook launched the pre-IPO roadshow this week, meeting with investors in New York, Boston and other cities to pitch the company’s stock to potential investors.

The Zuckerberg hoodie may not have been what the investors were expecting to see, and certainly not what they’re used to, but will this signature look really hurt Facebook’s ability to gain funding from investors?

Dan Olds, an analyst at Gabriel Consulting Group said that the Zuckerberg hoodie has been called disrespectful by some Wall Street types.

“It could be taken as studied indifference, arrogance, or that he simply didn’t think about what he was putting on. He was there to sell Facebook as a company and the first rule of sales is that you don’t give your prospective customers any reason to be uncomfortable before you start selling them,” Olds said.

The Wall Street Journal was quick to find a more boardroom-friendly version of the hoodie for Zuckerberg. Christina Binkley reported today about the Executive Pinstripe Hoodie.

Perhaps the new Zuckerberg hoodie, it can be purchased for a mere $148. That may sound like a lot for a hoodie, but at least it’s cheaper than a suit, and perhaps this option would mollify some of the Wall Street execs. 

Randy Jackson says Michael never ordered to have him shot

Fiddes is spouting crazy stories again

Randy Jackson denies that his brother Michael Jackson ordered to have Randy shot.

A story broke Tuesday that in 2005 Michael Jackson’s former bodyguard, Matt Fiddes, became paranoid and ordered his bodyguards to shoot his brother Randy Jackson.

Now, Randy Jackson has said these allegations are “absolutely absurd.”

According to Fiddes, who has repeatedly sold ridiculous stories about the King of Pop to U.K. publication The Sun, Michael Jackson became paranoid over his brothers’ attempts to sign him to a Jackson Five reunion tour.

Always a legitimate reason to have your sibling killed, right?

This is the story according to Fiddes:

“By 2005 Michael had surrounded himself with Nation of Islam bodyguards and became paranoid to the point that he would bar family from coming into his home. Things reached a head when Randy was trying to force his way past the bodyguards to speak to him in one of his rented homes. Michael ordered him to be shot. He was out of mind on drugs and luckily Randy was OK. Michael shouted at the bodyguards that he wanted Randy shot, and Randy really feared he’d be killed. I don’t think Michael ever intended to kill him and told the guards to shoot him in the leg. But Randy was so scared he got on the phone and threatened to call the press.”

A rep for Randy Jackson told TMZ, “There’s no way I the world that this actually happened.”

The rep for Randy Jackson also said that the Jackson family is choosing to ignore Fiddes rather than take him to court because they see the matter as a non-issue.

Randy Jackson is only one of Fiddes’ recent targets in his attempt to stay in the media spotlight. Fiddes also accused Michael Jackson of a fleeting affair with Whitney Houston.

A love child from that affair would have come out of the womb in wearing sequins and hitting high notes in two octaves.

Next Fiddes will be telling us that Michael Jackson was really the son of Elvis Presley and Queen Elizabeth, and that Randy Jackson has been heading the cover-up all along. Time to start ignoring his ludicrous allegations.

Jon Hamm lands starring role, dishes out advice, and continues to be awesome

There’s no stopping Jon Hamm

Jon Hamm is synonymous with Don Draper on the hit TV series Mad Men, and he has made several big screen appearances in supporting roles, but it looks like Jon Hamm has landed his first role as a leading man on the silver screen.

Jon Hamm was Kristen Wiig’s friend with benefits in Bridesmaids, and his attempts to take down Ben Affleck’s crime ring in The Town were heroic, but everyone knows Ben Affleck trumps all. But it’s Jon Hamm’s turn to be the one who can’t lose in Disney’s Million Dollar Arm.

The film tells the true-life story of sports agent J.B. Bernstein, who will be played by Jon Hamm, who created an India-based reality show about cricket to find baseball prospects. The show was called The Million Dollar Arm (hence the name of the film) and introduced the world to two Indian men, Rinku Singh and Dinesh Patel, who became the first two Indian men to sign contracts with Major League Baseball.

More Jon Hamm news links the sexy 41 year-old and 22 year-old Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter) to the same role. Well, almost. Rumors are starting to churn that both actors are interested in playing the same character at different ages in a new four-part British television miniseries.

Not much is known about the project yet, but according to Vulture, the project would have Jon Hamm and Daniel Radcliffe taking on a darkly humorous role as a young Russian doctor who tries to overcome—or at least hide—his insecurities and self-doubt. The setting is post-World War I, and with stars like Jon Hamm and Daniel Radcliffe interested, this miniseries is sure to get some more media attention in the coming months.

So Jon Hamm has two upcoming projects too look forward to, and he is still killing it on the set of Mad Men. Is there anything this man can’t do? He’s even dishing out advice these days. Rookie magazine’s web series, Ask a Grown Man, recently starred Jon Hamm as the adviser of young ladies. The series allows young girls to ask questions to older men—father figures, not in a creepy way—that they would maybe be uncomfortable asking their own fathers.

Among the questions, sent via text, a girl asks what she should do about a guy who is interested in her one day, then ignores her the next. Jon Hamm gives an endearing, fatherly answer. “The world is your oyster. You’ll be just fine. Don’t define yourself with who wants to get with you. I’m sure you’re a lovely person.”

Jon Hamm already sounds like a dad, he’s played a dad in roles, now if only he and long-term girlfriend Jennifer Westfeldt would have children, Suri Cruz would be pacified and the world would be a much more adorable place altogether.

Vidal Sassoon dies at 84

The liberator of women’s hair and cultural icon passed away in his L.A. home

Vidal Sassoon, hairstylist and culture icon, died Wednesday at his home in Los Angeles at age 84.

Vidal Sassoon entered the style scene at a time when any stylish lady’s hair was teased, piled high, and sprayed with aerosol until the most precocious bee couldn’t make a dent in those beehives. Armed with shears and vision, Vidal Sassoon liberated women’s hair when they needed it most—the beginning of the 1960s, when women had more important things on their minds than the beauty parlor and hair curlers in bed didn’t mesh with their new liberated sexuality.

In 1993, Vidal Sassoon told the Los Angeles Times, “My idea was to cut shape into the hair, to use it like fabric and take away everything that was superfluous. Women were going back to work, they were assuming their own power. They didn’t have time to sit under the dryer anymore.”

Vidal Sassoon brought us the concept of wash-and-wear with styles such as the bob. His shaped cuts played an integral role in the “It Girl” fashions of the 1960s, including Mary Quant’s “look.” Could the miniskirt have become popular worn by a woman with a beehive? And Mia Farrow gave birth to the son of the devil in Rosemary’s Baby sporting that infamous pixie cut that she credits to him on screen; and in reality the $5,000 cut was another Vidal Sassoon original.

Vidal Sassoon opened his first salon in his native London in 1954, however it wasn’t until the mid-60’s that his cut-is-everything approach was perfected. He later opened more salons in England before expanding into the United States. He then introduced his line of shampoos and styling products under the Vidal Sassoon name.

Vidal Sassoon revolutionized the hair styling industry, and continued to perfect what he called his “pursuit of art” over the past several decades.

Vidal Sassoon is survived by his fourth wife, Rhonda, and three children. One daughter, Catya, died of an accidental drug overdose in 2002. None of his children went into the family business, but thanks to the Vidal Sassoon academies, many others have followed in the footsteps of this cultural icon.

Rarest gorilla seen in Cameroon

Footage captured by conservationists show a group of the rarest gorilla breed

The rarest gorilla, the Cross River gorilla, has been seen by hidden cameras in a forest in Cameroon.

Footage of the rarest gorilla was captured for the first time ever by conservationists who set up cameras in the Kagwene Gorilla Sanctuary in Cameroon. The Cross River gorilla is so rare that there are fewer than 250 of them in existence.

The rarest gorilla species is found mostly on the border between Nigeria and Cameroon, and it is the most endangered of the African apes. They are extremely shy and typically run away at the sight of a human.

The Cross River gorillas seen in the video were traveling in a group of eight. The short video footage gives a remarkable glimpse into the lives of these animals in their natural habitat.

“The footage provides us with our first tantalizing glimpse of Cross River gorillas behaving normally in their environment,” Christopher Jameson, Director of the Takamanda Mone Landscape Project said, “A person can study these animals for years and never even catch a glimpse of the gorillas, much less see anything like this.”

At one point in the video, a large male silverback gorilla charges across the screen pounding his chest. Next, a gorilla with a missing hand can be seen wandering across the footage. The wound appears to be healed, but the Wildlife Conservation Society, the group that caught the footage, claims that it’s a sign of traps and snares in the area.

“Cross River gorillas occur in very low densities across their entire range, so the appearance of possible snare injury is a reminder that continued law enforcement efforts are needed to prevent further injuries to gorillas in the sanctuary,” Liz Macfie, gorilla coordinator for WCS’s Species Program, said in a statement.

Now that the rarest gorilla has been seen on camera, conservationists will have more ammunition to convince local law enforcement to step up their hunting and trapping laws. But the footage also gives us a look at something so rare and fragile that it could be gone in a matter of years without intervention.

Check out the video to catch a glimpse of the rarest gorilla seen on film.