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September 04, 1980 - Image 89

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1980-09-04

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The Michigan Daily-Thursday, September 4, 1980-Page 15-8
BGS degree offers
educational alternative

Daily Photo by JIM KRUZ

The University's School of Music

North Campus continues to grow


(Continued from Page 11)
file units, a disc storage system, card
eaders, and terminals, among others.
Across the street the brick Phoenix
Memorial Laboratory, built in memory
of students and alumni who died in
World War II, houses the Ford Nuclear
Reactor and labs equipped for isotope
research. The Department of Nuclear
Engineering and others use the reactor
in lab courses and fission research, and
core and safety analysis.
ACROSS FROM ONE of the earliest
North Campus structures-the Mor-
timer E. Cooley Memorial Laboratory,
She metallic and brick facade shields
he Department of Nuclear
Engineering, the Cooley Electronics
Lab, the Department of Research
Development and Administration
(DRDA), -Research News Editorial Of-
fices. The Nuclear Engineering Depar-
tment maintains offices, classrooms,
and a teaching lab in nuclear in-
struments here. Affilated with the Elec-
trical and Computer Engineering
x epartment, the Cooley Lab contains
nderwater physics, acoustics, and,
radio communications research
Down the road is the Library Exten-
sion 0Service and Library Storage
Building. The building contains the.
overflow from main campus libraries.
The Bentley Historical Library, then
Gerald R. Ford Library, and the Univ-
ersity Printing Services buildings are
down the street to the right.
HOUSING THE Michigan Historical
ECollections, the Bentley Library is a
non-circulating, closed-stack research
library. Its landscaped garden and
sculpture courtyard are exquisite. The
Ford Library will house alumnus and
former President Ford's congressional,
vice-presidential, and presidential

records, papers, and documents-a
amounting to more than 20 million
manuscript pages. Across the street,
the University Printing Services prints
practically anything-letterheads,
business cards, etc.-for University
employees. The work is then charged tb
the employees' department.
Up the road from the printing
services is the Research Ad-
ministration Building. The long Walter
E. Lay Automotive Laboratory houses
the Mechanical Engineering Depar-
tment's lab facilities, classrooms, and
faculty offices. Funded by the Depar-
tment of Education, the Rehabiliation
Engineeing Center houses several
research projects here. Currently,
professors and students from several
departments are designing a wheelchair
which may lift the handicapped into
automobiles by remote control, en-
abling them to drive without aid from
others. The Civil Engineering Depar-
tment's surveying instruments are
stored at the Lay Auto Lab as well.
Behind trees the relatively large G.G.
Brown Laboratory almost escapes un-
noticed. The Brown Lab houses the flid
dynamics afid control teaching and
research facilities. In addition, the
building contains the Engineering
Human.. Performance and Safety
Laboratory, the heat transfer lab, laser
facilities, Industrial and Operations
Engeinering offices, and the Naval Ar-
chitecture and Marine Engineering
Department's 60- by 100-foot
maneuvering tank. The tank is com-
plete with wavemaker, beach, and
instruments used in hull-form develop-
ment, motion prediction, and other
ocean engineering studies.
Lab, "Engineering IA" houses water

resources labs and classrooms and
biochemical engineering labs. Even-
tually the Dow Building (Chemical and
Metallurgical Engineering) will con-
nect to the west end of the G.G.Brown
Home of the High Altitude Research
Laboratory, the Research Activities
building down from the Brown lab con-
tains laboratories and faculty offices
belonging to both the Atmospheric and
Oceanic Science (AOS) and Aerospace
Engineering Departments.
Across the street the brick and con-
crete Space Research Building houses
AOS- offices and classrooms and the
Space Physics Research Lab. Weather
forecasting equipment is also housed
Look down Hayward to the right, and.
you might catch a glimpse of the gray
dome and ribbed structure of the
Areospace Engineering Department's
three wind tunnels. Scientists use two
supersonic tunnels to test rocket and
spacecraft designs in 850-1700 mph win-
ds. A low-speed tunnel tests low-speed
landing characteristics of other air-
craft. The Naval Architecture and
Marine Engineering Building lies past
the Aerospace facilities where
cyclotron offices were located until
1977. Drafting rooms, classrooms, and
faculty offices occupy the space today.
Surrounded by high earth embankmen-
ts, empty cyclotron bays nearby now
house Nuclear Engineering Depar-
tment facilities.
TURNING LEFT onto Cram Circle,
you'll find many of the University's
family housing units-the Northweood
Apartments. Built in the 1950s, the
brick Northwood I-III apartments lie
between Plymouth and Hubbard
Roads. Built in the 1970s, the wood-
framed Northwood IV & V townhouses
lie to the east. Jungle gyms, barbecue
grills, and "big wheels" are strewn
among the buildings.
Amidst Northwood apartments on the
north edge of North Campus, Ann Arbor
Fire Station No. 5 serves as the main
training facility for the Extension Ser-
vice's Firemanship Training Program.
The program offers a 24-hour live-in
training academy for beginners plus
more specialized continuing education
courses and seminars for advanced
firefighters. A "burning-area"--four
structures on two acres of.
pavement-serve as a training ground
northest of here.
Traveling on Hubbard Rd., you'll
cross Huron Parkway.
Up on the hill to the left, faculty
members, graduate students and
others study transportation-related
issues such as driver. behavior and
vehicle analysis at the Highway Safety
Research Institute.

The Bachelor of General Studies
(BGS) degree is perhaps the most
controversial degree offered by the
University. The controversy arises
from the flexibility of the program,
which allows for less specific
requirements than most degrees.
Many educators and students are
skeptical of the quality of education
that can be obtained through this
John Knott, acting LSA Dean, said
he was not sure whether he would
recommend the BSG degree to
students. "It depends on the aims of
the student. Some it serves and
others it may not serve so well. We
don't know enough about what
students are taking in this degree to
know if it's a good degree or not."
THE BGS IS by far the most
flexible degree one can obtain at the
University. The requirements are:
* Completion of at least 120
semester hours including at least 60_
credit hours of upper-level cours
work elected; at the 300 level and
above, or its equivalent;
" Completion of the, total
academic - program in good
academic standing (overall
minimum 2.0 GPA for all courses
and at least a 2.0 GPA in upper-level
course work) ;
" Completion of two semesters of
the English composition
Not more than 20 credit hours of
upper-level course work of the 60
required may be counted from a
single department. Upnto20 non-LSA
upper-level hours may also be taken.
There are no foreign language
requirements, no distribution
requirements, and no concentration
"The BGS started in 1969, a
product of the foment of the 60's and
the press for liberalizing the
curriculum," said Louis Rice,
associate director of LSA Academic
Advising. He added, "The BGS was
a response on the part of the faculty
for dispensing of the foreign
language requirement."
are two common reasons why
students choose the BGS. The first is
that this degree affords students
considerable amount of freedom to
design their own academic
program. He said that a number of
the best students are attracted to the
BGS program.
"Due to the lack of structure, the
BGS attracts some of the worst
students, too," Rice explained for
his second reason. He added that
this degree could be used as the most
convenient way to expedite
Rice said that in professional
schools the BGS student fares well
with respect to being admitted. He
added that in law school admissions,
BGS students rank fourth after
political science, economics, and
history majors. "However," Rice
continued, "BGS does not represent
a similar number in medicine and
health sciences, and far fewer
students pursue these fields.
depends on the quality of the BGS,"
Rice said. He added that most
people are willing to look beyond the
Allan Stillwagon, assistant dean to
the Law School, agreed, "All law
schools look at a student's
curriculum and there's a wide spec-
trum in any degree program, so the
label doesn't mean that much. You'd
have to show me individual
academic records. It (admissions)
wouldn't depend on the degree."
Thre has been very little work
done on follow up studies for BGS

graduates, according tor Rice. He
added that since this if the tenth
year of the BGS program,_LSA is-

talking about doing an extensive
survey on this subject.
One survey, published last April
by the Michigan Alumnus, gives a
firsthand look at how three
BGS students, Karen Saslow, David
Demarkey, and Jon L. Keller, fared
seven years after graduation.
"FOLLOWING HER graduation,
Karen took a retailing management
job which she held until 1974. The
next year she returned; to graduate
school and later received her MS in
medical communications from Ohio
State University. Since 1976 Karen
has been coordinator of medical
education for Riverside Methodist
Hospital in Columbus, Ohio.
"David Demarkey spent two
years in property management and
another 'two years in associaiton
management after he graduated
from the University. Today he is a
salesman for Pacific Northwest Bell
in Portland, Oregon.
"After Jon Keller received his
BGS, he entered the University
Medical School. He earned his MD in
1977 and is now a resident physican
in_ pathology at the University of
Vermont College of Medicine in
SASLOW SAID she chose the BGS
because "it allowed me the ability to
combine coursework in several
areas which, in a structured
program, I would not have been able
to enroll in. It allowed me to in-
didualize a program to my goals."
Demarkey chose BGS because "in

transferring from engineering to
LSA, I was afraid my program
would be delayed by having to com-
plete distribution requirements,
especially a foreign language. Fur-
thermore, I was leaving engineering
partly to get out of its regimen-
Keller said there were both disad-
vantages and advantages to the BGS
degree, "It may be easier for a
student in the BGS program to do
themselves a disservice by sampling
courses too broadly and thereby
having no concrete areas of
academic strength, though I am not
personally aware of this happening.
For myself, I took only those courses
I thought I would be interested in.
and, as a consequence, enjoyed and
benefited from the experience. It is
much easier to do well when
emotionally satisfied'with one's own
The BGS is not a "cop out" accor-
ding to Saslow. "BGS students were
usually not the loafers. They were
the innovators, the creative in-
dividuals who achieved more in a
self-structured setting. It is harder
to be the first in a new program than
to be one in an established program.
A survey conducted by Rice in 1975
shows that out of 228 respondents,
only 100 (or 44 per cent) indicated
gradudate school enrollment. Other
than that, there is a lack of
significant studies showing what can
actually be done with the degree.


Daily Photo
A treetop view of West Quad, South Quad, and the outlying parts of Ann
megafra Mes-
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Daily Photo by JIM KRUZ
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