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September 10, 1987 - Image 44

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1987-09-10

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Page 12 -The Michigan Daily, Thursday, September 10, 1987 1

for profs,
s tudents
Ah, college. Land of knowledge,
ivy-covered buildings, cavernous
libraries, carpeted lecture halls, and
distinguished, grey-haired professors
who preside over their lecturns and
teach the wonders of the world.
So who are the people in the
ripped Levi's and "Save the whale"
T-shirts standing in front of your
introductory poli sci class, looking
about five years older than you and
announcing that you have a paper
due next week?
Well, they might have forgotten
to include his picture in the glossy
college catalogue, but they're your
teaching assistants - most com-
monly known as TAs but
occasionally referred to as "graduate
students," "cheap labor," and usual-
ly around finals "the obnoxious,
pompous assholes who're going to
keep me out of graduate school."
SINCE TAs are a staple of
large universities where the amount
of courses far outnumber the
amount of available professors, and
since TAs teach the majority of
introductory classes, first-year
students can expect these people
who are not teachers or students -
but both- to be teaching most of
their classes, reading most of his
papers, and deciding most of their
The last point insures that first-
year students quickly become
accustomed to living with their
TAs. By winter term TAs will be
merely a fact of life, and most of
what you'll hear about them will
See TAs, Page 15

High enrollment
levels provide LSA
needed funds

Doily Photo by SCOTT LITUCHY'
It doesn't have to be Passover
LSA sophomore Steve Yuan eats matzo in the South Quad cafeteria. Yuan said his grandmother loved matzo
and got him hooked on it.
Extra-curricular activities
teach what classes don't

Officials at the School of
Literature, Science, and Arts are
unwilling to shrink the size of the
LSA student body because they fear
that fewer students and the resulting
decrease in tuition revenue would
jeopardize hiring new faculty. But
some LSA professors feel the
college is getting too big.
Currently, LSA admits 3,200
first-year students each year but
only has about 720 faculty
members to teach them. Shrinking
the size of the student body would
cause the University to lose money
that could be used to hire more
professors, according to LSA Dean
Peter Steiner.
"If we decrease enrollments by'
200, revenues would decrease and
then we couldn't make the
necessary faculty appointments,"
Steiner said.
HE ADDED the funds used to
increase the faculty by 20 each year
comes mainly from student tuition.
Last year 58 faculty members were
"The tuition revenue to the
college is definitely increasing the
budget of the college," Steiner said.
The budget for LSA is currently
$64 million, which aside from
hiring faculty, is used to pay for
research projects, laboratory spaces,
and maintaining buildings.
Cliff Sjogren, the University's
Director of Admissions, thinks the
current number of enrollees, in
light of the record ten percent
increase in admissions applications
this year, will increase the quality
of the college.
He said the increased number of
applicants - which has risen from
9,000 to over 16,000 in the past
four years - coupled with a steady
number of acceptants during the
same period has increased the
quality of the student body as well
as made LSA more difficult to

"IT HAS created a nice cycle in.
which strong faculty begets goad'
students which begets good research
funding which begets more,
money," he said.
But many professors fear the
LSA student body is too big. John
Knott, former chair of the English,
department, thinks the number of
students currently in LSA could be
a determent to the educational
quality of the college.
As an example Knott cited the,,
problem in his own department. Hei
said in recent years more student
have decided to major in English,-
but the University has been unable
to provide the necessary faculty to,
meet this increase.
"The average class size has,
increased consistently over the past:.
few years and we can't teach them>
the way we want to," he said.
He added the college must be
"careful" in the amount of students
it admits because it could have
some "implications for teaching a
larger number of students."
LSA's Associate Dean for:,
Budget, Carolyn Copeland, thinks
the increased number of enrollees:
has helped and will continue to help,.'
alleviate the overcrowding problem
by allowing more money to go
toward faculty hiring.
She added, however, that it takes,
considerable time to locate and hire
tenured professors, so in most
cases, lecturers or teaching'-
assistants will be moved into the
overcrowded courses until tenured'
faculty can be found.
Knott thinks the college should
make more of an effort to find
tenured professors because they ca ;
teach a wide variety of subjects that'
lecturers or teaching assistants,


In high school, a "school club"
was often a euphemism for a
resume booster, a college applica -
tion polisher, or even a good way
to kill a few hours after school
before going home for dinner.
But in college - where the days
are longer, the classes are harder,
and the demands on students' time
are always too many - the
decision to join a club must be
preceded by careful consideration.
Which is not to say that first-
year students should avoid getting
involved in University activities
and clubs. In fact, some student
organization consultants warn that
when first-year students consis -
tently hit the books at the expense
of non-academic involvement - as
the majority of them do - they end.
up missing out on what a large
portion of college life is all about.
BESIDES providing students
with the opportunity for a well-
rounded education, college extra-
curriculars also prepare students for
careers, develop leadership skills,
and just make the campus seem
Is there a right way and a wrong
way for a first-year student to go
about getting involved? Most
students leaders say "no" but add

that some rather common miscon -
ceptions and pitfalls can hamper a
first-year student's involvement.
Thus, these "dos" and "don'ts":
ONE. Don't avoid getting
involved because you think your
grades will suffer. Gary Perlman,
last year's Undergraduate Law Club
president, noted that first-year
students traditionally avoid joining
activities because they are not sure
what they can handle.
"But true commitment to a
student organization does not have
to detract from studying or your
social life," he said. "The old adage
that busy people get more done
definitely holds true at this
TWO. don't go overboard. The
beginning of the fall term will
include many forums for exploring
activities - including Festifall,
when over 200 clubs will sell
themselves on the Diag, the
University Activities Committee's
(UAC) annual display of some 20
different events including musicals
and plays, and a multitude of mass
meetings for social, artistic,
political, religious, athletic, and
minority groups.
If students rush toward every
activity that catches their eyes, they
are bound for disaster. Choosing a
few clubs - or even one - and
giving it devotion and attention
will prevent a student from be -
coming a permanent "back-of-the-
room" member.
Becca Felton, current Vice
President of the Michigan Student
Assembly (MSA) points out that
all of this year's MSA officers are
fourth-year participants in the
organization who committed
HAIRSTYLING for Men & Women
Opposite Jacobson's Maple Viage
668-9329 761-2733

themselves to MSA in their first
year of college.
THREE. Don't be shy. Chess
Club Project Coordinator Fred
Lindsay described how last year
"freshmen tended to come and go:..
. at meetings just ducking their
heads in the door and waiting shyly
for people to approach them."
This is often not the fault of the
first-year students. Felton said, "A
lot of first-time leaders don't have
the polished leadership skills to
integrate new students. The new
students sense the confusion and if
they don't feel effective then they'll
just quit. That's a typical situation
in student organizations."
Indeed, many clubs - with the
exception of the Greek system -
don't have specific methods of
initiating new students into the
organization, leaving it up to the
individual student to be assertive.
FOUR. Do seek out what you
want. Jack Meiland, the faculty
leader of the Amnesty International
Student Support Group, said that
sometimes it's difficult for new
students to find out about some of
the less publicized organizations on
"It's pretty hard for freshmen to
get to know about us since we
don't have a mass meeting," he
said. MSA publishes a list of
contact phone numbers for over 500
university activities that students
can pick up in their office - a list
that includes even the more obscure
activities like the Amy Carter Fan
Club and the Handstand Club.
FIVE. Do use university re -
sources. The Student Organization
Development Center (SODC)
located in the Union is an entire
office devoted to helping students
find non-academic campus activ -
Julie Lavrack, an organizational
consultant to the SODC, urges
students who are uncertain what
activities to join to go to the
SODC office in the Michigan
Union for a personal consultation
in which an advisor will help target
See CLUBS, Page 14

Delta Upsilon Fraternity, 1331 Hill at Forest.






It's not Just the best
Michigan has to offer.

Itsthe best there t.

1t 1

LSA senior Ted Stamatakos looks up at the pillar located on the lawn by
Lorch Hall, location of the School of Architecture before it moved to
North Campus.
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(their own or others')


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One Answer:
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