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Historically, it's been hard to get much sympathy for the plight of NCAA athletes. People tended to think first and foremost of the athletes who would be going on to high pay and celebrity, overlooking the small number that would be true of and not understanding the degree of exploitation even they face along the way. But lately there's momentum behind the understanding that these athletes aren't really amateurs and they're putting their bodies on the line for school profits. The athletes themselves are fighting for change; during televised football games on Saturday, Josh Eidelson reports, 28 players wrote "APU," short for "All Players United," on wrist tape or elsewhere. Players are protesting conditions like this:
Huma noted that current NCAA rules allow universities to cancel scholarships and medical coverage for athletes injured on the field, and prohibit universities from replacing athletic scholarships with non-athletic scholarships when a player is dropped from the team. The NCAA, charged Huma, would rather schools “save a buck and excuse themselves from their stated obligation of educating that player.” With “over a billion dollars in new revenue” coming in, said Huma, “there should be more support for the players,” rather than all the cash “going to the places where it usually goes”: luxury boxes and six-figure salaries. NCPA has also called for college athletes to be allowed to sign endorsement deals, and for stipends they receive to be hiked to better reflect the true cost of attending college.
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    Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is hiring 55,000 seasonal workers and adding another 70,000 part-time and full-time workers as it gears up for the holiday season and reverses workforce reductions that have made it hard to keep store shelves stocked.

    The company is moving 35,000 part-time workers to full-time status and is elevating another 35,000 to part-time from temporary, the Bentonville, Arkansas-based retailer said today in a statement. The 70,000 workers will be elevated in the next few months and will keep their new posts after the holiday season ends, said Kory Lundberg, a Wal-Mart spokesman.

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    [T]he truth is, by finally showing I don’t believe that American education can be saved by youthful enthusiasm, I feel more like a leader than I ever did inside the corps.

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