The Michigan Daily-Thursday, September 6,1979-Page 5A
Shapiro: His stands-on the issues
(Editor's note: Daily staffer Julie Engebrecht
tervie wed Harold Shapiro on the day he was selected:
the Regents to be the next president of the Univer-
sity. In the 45-minute session, Shapiro commented on
many issues and topics he is likely to face when he
assumes the top post Jan. 1. Following are excerpts
from the interview.)
firms doing business in
"First of all, I have a developing position..
As I look at the divestment situation, one's
position can change legitimately as events in'
the world change. I think that divestment is a
sufficiently complicated issue so that equally
well meaning people can disagree.
"I.think that's the first thing one has to un-
derstand. Unfortunately, neither side in the
debate wants to say that. And I really do
believe there are important and viable,
arguments on both sides, and the final wisdom
of action is not yet clear.
"My own position I hold, well, I hold it with
some firmness, but still with a background of
uneasiness, since I feel the situation can
change. My own position is against divestment.
I'm in favor of shareholders taking action to
induce corporations to act in the most socially
responsible way they can.
"It's a very complicated issue. I'm against
blanket divestment, but it's a policy in tran-
sition and development. There's a lot to be
said on all sides of the issue."
"I expect in the next decade that we may
find some cutbacks in our programs necessary.
We'll have to do it very selectively, and very
discriminately-getting rid of those things that,
aren't so relevant and don't speak to the
University as well as they ought to.
"So if we're going to have some growth and
some new things, we're going to have to phase
out some of the old things."
"Funding for higher education in the next
decade is going to be difficult. I think there will
be some serious constraints in the development
of higher education because of very small in-
crements in its resource base.
"I think that if we're creative enough and
aggressive enough and work hard enough ..,.
we can run counter to the trend."
on moral issues:
"One has to be cautious about it and make
sure the benefits outweight the risks-the risks
being the establishment of an institutional or
moral orthodox. Because once the University
feels that this is the correct moral position, a
faculty member or student not in that position
immediately feels not a part of that com-
munity, and that's unfortunate.
"Now that is not to say there aren't cases
where a stance is so important that it out-
weighs the University's action. You have to be
cautious about this, and make sure you under-
stand what the risks are as well as the gains."
Student participation in
"I'm in favor of some student involvement.
I'm not in favor of student involvement in some
areas. For example, I'm not in favor of studen
ts voting on issues of tenure. I am in favor' of
students on, say, the Budget Priorities Com-
"I'm very comfortable with student par-
ticipation providing the students become 'a
member of a committee, and don't just come to
the meeting every once in a While."
GROUPS LOOK A T CAMPUS ISSUES:
Faculty analyzes 'U' problems
For newcomers to the University
of Michigan, the opening of the fall
term in Ann Arbor will present a
mixture of conditions which I hope
you will find to be a preview of your
experience here. You will find a sen-
se of human vitality, springing from
the 35,000 students and the 15,000
employees of the University, and the
70,000 residents of one of the fine
communities of Michigan.
At the same time, you will
sometimes encounter conditions
which border on the chaotic, and you
begin to believe that all of those per-
sons are trying to occupy the same
building or drive on the same street
at the same time.
Your educational experience is
likely to be similar in nature. You
will have periods of time (many of
them, I hope) when your movement
into and through the world of ideas
brings you a sense of pleasure, of
enlightenment, of accomplishment
beyond any you have thus far ex-
perienced. You will also, in all
probability, have moments when the
'pmands of your educational
program seem excessive, when the
purpose of your effort is hard to
bring into focus, and when the welter
of ideas defies their orderly con-
I THINK it fair to say that a major
purpose of the faculty, staff, and
administration of the University is
to produce and prolong the periods
of excitement in learning and to
reduce, and if possible eliminate, the
moments of despondency or uncer-
It will take you some time to get
acquainted with the University, for
it is a large and complex place. Even
terim University president
after you have actually visited the
entire physical campus from the
stadium, to the Law Quadrangle, to
the Diagonal, to the Medical Cam-
pus, and on to the North Campus,
you will only be ready to begin your
k getting acquainted.
THE WORK OF the University
goes on inside the buildings, in the
hearts and minds of the people who
are its faculty, its staff, and its
students. To be acquainted with the
University is to know those people,
to -hear them, to understand them
and watch their work. Getting
acquainted can be and should be fun.
You may hear it said that the best
part of your education will come
outside . the classroom and
laboratory. I might quarrel with the
word "best," but I wquld not quarrel
with the proposition that the Univer-
sity offers much beyond the
We want you to have a great time
at a great University.
Many people - including some
University of Michigan faculty mem-
bers - subscribe to Ralph Waldo
Emerson's dictum: "The less gover-
nment, the better." Why is it then that
the faculty has taken the time and the
trouble to set up a system of University-
wide government? This system links
Ann Arbor professors from some seven-
teen academic units with each other
and with colleagues in Dearborn and
The principal reason for the exercise
is the need to have an organized method
of expressing faculty opinion in
operation. This necessity is not usually
as dramatic as the days of student
strikes of a decade ago. At that time the
Senate Advisory Committee on Univer-
sity Affairs (SACUA) office was a vir-
tual bunker. Radio contact was main-
tained with faculty members roving the
campus to keep communications open
and foster discussion rather than con-
CONCERNS WHICH touch the life of
the University are usually much more
mundane. Faculty committees are set
up to advise the several vice-presidents
and to deal with such problems as
tenure and civil liberties. Faculty
members serve on boards controlling
enterprises such as intercollegiate
athletics, the University Press, the
Michigan League and the University
Cellar. The typical agendas of these
committees would not make page one
on the Michigan Daily. They have been
called 'the housekeeping details' of the
Occasionally, however, topics
emerge which toutch the vital center of
the University and for that reason
generate widespread interest.
Classified research, freedom of speech,
DNA experimentation have all, in their
turn, engaged the attention of the
University community. Economic
disengagement from South Africa -
termed 'divestment' - now holds cen-
This seems to be an opportune
moment to explain the philosophy and
method of operation behind appoin-
tments to faculty committees -
perhaps in contrast to the appointments
made by other groups and the way in
which they operate. Consider the
THE QUESTION of ownership of
stock in companies which have dealings
with South Africa has been a principal
topic of investigation for the Senate
Assembly Advisory Committee on
Financial Affairs for the past two
develop a position on the basis of the
evidence, and communicate this
position to Senate Assembly in the form
of a report.
Recently the Regents asked Finan-
cial Affairs to re-examine its report of
February, 1978 on the divestment
problem. This time around, two studen-
ts, with definite stated positions joined
in the deliberations. Accordingly, the
issues were all re-examined in the light
of new data as well as previously known
facts. The goal which faculty members
set themselves - though they do not
always achieve it - is to make a
decision only after they have
thoroughly examined a question.
When a report is made to the Senate
years. This group is a standing commit-
tee of- the representative faculty
assembly. It is advisory to the Vice-
President and Chief Financial Officer.
The Committee on Financial Affairs'
purpose is to examine questions,
Assembly, Assembly members accept,
reject or ask for further study on the
topic of the report, but they do not
change its contents. In other words, the
most qualified members available,
representing a spectrum of talents, are
appointed to committees. Beyond the
charge to the committee itself, faculty
members are not instructed as to their
actions, in apparent contrast to present
practices of the Michigan Student
Assembly. MSA members perceive
their mandate to be to instruct student
members that they appoint to commit-
tees as to their actions.
In summary, faculty governance
committees exist to provide reasoned,
analyses of University problems from a
faculty perspective. In a sense, these
committees 'practice' on many items of
minimal interest so that they can
mobilize quickly and effectively to deal
with topics of importance.
SACUA (the Senate Advisory Committee
on University Affairs) is the executive coin-
mittee of the faculty Senate Assembly.
The Department of Intercollegiate
Athletics at the University of Michigan
would like to welcome all incoming
freshpersons, and we hope that the next
few years during your stay on the cam-
pus that you will not only take part in
the great recreational programs that
we have, but also the varsity sports
One of the reasons for our tremen-
dous success in athletics has been the
great support we have received from
our student body over the years.
Therefore, we hope that you will also
College years a time for involvement
What is a college education? This is a question
that we, as stpdents, must face .up to .in our
academic pursuits. College is a time for exploring
new ideas and attitudes. It is a period of self-
evaluation. We tend to search for our own iden-
tity and values. As young adults, we use the
resources of the University to help us find our
eventual role as members of society.
The University of Michigan is one of the finest
academic institutions in the world. The inspired
student has limitless resources available on this
campus. But I am not just speaking of the
professors, libraries, classrooms, and research
labs. The innovative, curious student has many
unique opportunities to meet other people and
exchange personal ideas and values.
As the current president of the Michigan
Student Assembly (MSA), I would like to en-
courage all students to involve themselves in
campus. activities. MSA, as a student gover-
nment, is always looking for the young, bright,
motivated student to bring the Assembly fresh
ideas and new perspectives. We function as an
advocacy group for student interests on campus
as well as providing services such as health and
property insurance tailored to student needs.
Student Legal Services is funded by the Assem-
bly along with a Housing Law Reform Project.
WHILE THERE are many other areas that the
Michigan Student Assembly is involved in, we
are only as effective as our student resources
allow. But the goals and objectives of the
Michigan Student Assembly are not always ob-
vious. Sometimes it seems that the members of
MSA are out of touch with the concerns of the
student body. While there may be a certain
amount of truth to this, it is important to under-
stand the commitment that MSA representatives
The students. of this University make up the
Education shouldn't end at college
largest common interest group on campus.
Without students, the University could not exist.
Yet many times our ideas and opinions are
overlooked by the University community. There
are- reasons for this. For instance, the average
student is at the University for less than four
years. It is difficult to build a strong student
organization with this rapid turnover of people.
One group of students may work hard to build
the student government for several years, only to
see it crumble when they leave.
Second, the time that most students are willing
to put into student government work is limited.
Studying, and many times part-time jobs, take
precedence over student government.
THIRD, AND MAYBE the most important, is
that students are vying for their interests as a
very transient group in a stable community.
Administrators and faculty members have been
at the University for much longer periods of time
than most students. Individuals in the former
two groups have a much better chance to look af-
ter their specific interests than we, as students,
do. That is why our task as the Michigan Student
Assembly is so important.
True, there are many inherent obstacles to ef-
fective student governance, yet I believe these
obstacles can be overcome. There exists a great
pool of potential leaders in the student body of
this campus. This potential must be tapped to ef-
fectively assert our rights and privileges as
members of the University community. We will
- never be able to operate in a vacuum.
Throughout our entire lives there will always be
special interests vying for our attention and
energy. Choices will have to be made about what
we want in a career, an avocation, or even
leisure activities. I encourage you to be concer-
ned with the environment within which we live.
Make your presence felt and continue to grow as
There is one purpose that educators can agree
on concerning the value of student government.
It is an effective tool for the development of an
In Cleveland, Ohio, there is a
young man who graduated from
the University several years ago
and now works at a comfortable
job in a modern office. He likes
his job and his life well enough,
but he frequently exclaims that
his college years were "the best
times" of his life.
H fondly remembers close
BEING A PRIDEFUL thing,
the University would most likely
sulk and consider itself a failure
if its graduates should claim to
reach the apex of their lives
before the age of 25. For in cases
like that of the young Cleveland
executive the University has
failed to achieve to its greatest
purpose-to teach students to
To a great extent, the Univer-
sity's responsibilitiy is to ensure
happy memories, or at least not
unhappy ones stemming from
elitism or discrimination, against
students who weren't born the
way society might prefer that
they be born.
ALSO. THE University's duty
is to provide new information and
experiences with which to
challenge the consumers who pay
to attend it. In this area, the
University is quite successful,
partly because of its size and
diversity. As the recruitment
brochures boast, the University's
rich resources have been able to
provide a bevy of museums and
But creating new experiences
true. It comes down to laziness,
both on the part of students and
faculty who find it easier to lec-
ture, test, and graduate than to
teach people how to open new
But much of the burden of
making the University work falls
on students who, by the time they
reach the University, ought to be
wise and forceful enough to
demand a rule in their own
education. The University must
hand over some of its power to
students, who must be willing to
grasp it so they can learn to use
power later, lest they find them-
selves trapped by their own
doing in a Cleveland office
building dreaming of the past.
More often than not, the
University athletic director
support our teams by attending con-
tests in the 22 sports we compete in for
men and women.
Michigan is one of the few schools in
the nation that has the same number of
varsity sports for women as for men. In
addition, Michigan has more indoor
recreational space than any university
in the country. As a result, our student
body is more involved in club sports,
recreation, and varsity sports than any
institution I know of. Due to the great
foresight of two former athletic direc-
tors, Fielding Yost and Herbert "Fritz"
Crisler, our facilities for athletics and
recreation for both men and women are
second to none.
nation-wide, is faced with the same
problems that most businesses and
families are faced with, and that is the
escalation of costs. Some of you may
have read recently that of the 800
schools in the NCAA only a handful are
able to balance their athletic budgets.
Well over 700 schools are depending
Editor of the Daily
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