Perla Arellano

Journalist with experience in covering breaking news, feature stories, profiles, reviews and more.

Educational journey causes ripple effect

After school, Erika Munoz’s mother would take the 8-year-old to the fields to work alongside the rest of the family picking pumpkins, jalapenos and pecans. “We still had to plant onions until the sun started going down,” she said. “I knew the field was not what I wanted for me, for my future.” Now, at 37 years old, Munoz works diligently to finish her associate’s degree after starting college just three years ago. Through her experience, she motivates other women of different ages who feel tha

Group travels to protect the Mother Road

A group trying to save a special stretch of the Mother Road stopped outside of an art gallery on Amarillo’s piece of historic Route 66 on Thursday to gather signatures for a petition via a special van. People from all over the world have signed the van, a traveling petition designed to gather support to make a 103-mile section of Route 66 that passes through the Mojave Desert in California a National Monument, said Route 66 preservation activist and self-described roadie-in-charge James Conkle.

Little Herds Brings Bugs to Austin Palates

Soon cricket tacos might be on your list of things to eat. Or maybe even cookies made with cricket flour. Entomophagy is the consumption of insects, and Little Herds is working to change the stigmatic view the Western world has about eating little critters. Little Herds, a non-profit organization based in Austin, Texas, is working alongside other groups and organizations to educate and inform people about insects' nutritional value and the sustainability they offer to the environment.

Disaster Drill Prepares Nursing Students for Emergency Situations

Outside the double doors that lead into the gym stands a mob of people with traces of dried-up fake blood over their faces, necks and legs. “Are you conscious?” said Dewayne Trice with blood dripping out of his ears and mouth. “Yeah, I think so,” said Rebecca Caballero, her left leg, forehead and cheek covered in blood. Trice and Caballero are both junior nursing students and volunteers at the disaster drill put on by the School of Nursing at the University of Texas at Austin to give health profession students basic training in disaster response.

Hope Chest inspires children to tell their own story

After raising funds in the fall and spring, Badger Hearts members hosted their annual Hope Chest Banquet Saturday at Amarillo College. Ten foster youths received certificates of graduation sent by Gov. Rick Perry, and three AC students received Hope Chest checks from Texas Child Protective Services, said Lesley Ingham, a speech instructor and club adviser. Featured speakers were David Lee, Badger Hearts founding president, and Keith Howard, director of Arrow Child and Family Ministries, an eme

Carter guides travelers, supports students

One of the biggest surprises Judy Carter, honors program coordinator, had while working at Amarillo College was during her first year when she realized a difference between high school and college: student attendance was not mandatory. Carter had worked at Amarillo High School for 21 years as a teacher in speech, theater and English. In 1992, she was hired as a speech instructor by AC President Dr. Paul Matney, the then-chairman of the Language, Communication and Fine Arts Division. She said s

Matney to retire after 35 years of service

Amarillo College soon will have a 14th president. According to an AC press release, Dr. Paul Matney will retire this summer after 35 years with AC. He announced his retirement privately to the board of regents March 25 and publicly Monday. Matney not only is president of the college but has been a student, instructor, professor and dean, according to the release. He was officially named president by the board in 2009 after serving as acting president since 2008 when the committee moved from th

Child abuse problem addressed

Victor Vieth and Frank Kros were the featured speakers at the 14th Annual Child Abuse Prevention Conference Thursday at the Amarillo Civic Center. Kros, a career child advocate, also spoke Wednesday on the Amarillo College Washington Street Campus. Pinkie Porcher, child abuse prevention advocates chairwoman, said she has been involved with the annual conference since its first year. According to Porcher, 500 people attended the event from the 52 agencies, business and organizations that acted a

Outside the U.S., reporting amid danger

In areas such as Mexico and parts of the Middle East, many journalists have died in their role as watchdogs. At the recent IRE Conference in San Antonio, the session “Reporting amid danger: When journalist are targeted and newsrooms are infiltrated” included Tim Johnson from McClatchy Newspapers, Gaston Monge Estrada from El Universal, Rana Sabbagh from Arab Reporters for Investigative Journalism, and Andrew Donohue from The Center of Investigative Reporting as moderator. Many journalists have

No time to waste in an emergency

A student had an allergic reaction during an Amarillo College class Oct. 7. The reaction was more severe than ones she had had before. Amy Cruz, a speech communication major, had the severe allergic reaction during her English class after a freshly peeled banana caused her to have hives, leading to her airway closing up, she said. She said she also is allergic to most fruits, with watermelons and pecans being the worst ones. Her allergies have developed over time, she said. Cruz said she call

The power of social media: Geolocation for news

Look for a key word. Look for a date. Click search. You might just have found a source. Thursday’s "The power of social media: Geolocation for news" session, with Glenn Anderson from BBC, Mark Luckie from Twitter, Jennifer Peck from Banjo, and Doug Haddix of Ohio State Univesity as moderator, focused on the importance of social media in the daily life of a journalist. The action of shoeleather reporting in getting sources for a specific event has changed. For example, according to Peck, Banjo

Recycled poop: What goes around comes around

The biology department has teamed up with the High Plains Food Bank and Amarillo College Food Pantry to create a system that will eventually be used to grow vegetables and bring fresh produce into the AC Pantry. HPFB garden program manager, Cara Young, and consultant of nutrition education director, Justin Young, joined Claudie Biggers, associate professor in biological sciences, and Karen Logan, AC Food Pantry coordinator to start the project, an aquaponic system. Logan said the collaboration