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An essential guide for
the new 'U' student
by Travis McReynolds
Entering the University of Michigan can be as confusing as moving to a
foreign country, and as difficult as finding yourself in a jungle without a
Moving from highly conservative Grand Rapids, Mich., as I did, to the
more liberal town of Ann Arbor was quite shocking. Grand Rapids has a
higher ratio of churches to people than any other city in America -- this is
true. I think it is something like one church for every 15 people, although my
calculations could be off a bit.
Whereas Ann Arbor has more restaurants per capita than any other city in
Michigan - it is like moving away from the Stoics and moving in with the
Epicureans, "Eat, drink, be merry, for tomorrow may never come!"
In the next few weeks, you will be forced to adjust to a new way of living,
just as I was forced to do two years ago. Don't panic, I caught on quickly -
everyday I pick up a few more U of M survival tips.
I am proud to say I speak the language spoken by the veteran students quite
well now, and I have learned the customs of campus life through various
means - by asking many questions, and by the less popular method of trial
I attended Grand Rapids Junior College, or as I like to call it, High School
Part II, for two years. With only 10,000 students, GRJC is quite different from
the U of M.
Attending junior college does have its advantages. Forty dollars per credit
hour is slightly more reasonable than the University's current robbery of
$144.63 per credit. By transferring in as a junior, I was also spared the
suffering of living in a dorm and sharing a bathroom with 5,000 other students.
On the other hand, living at home two years after high school can be a bit
grueling at times. Nineteen years-old with a curfew is not only embarrassing,
but downright infuriating. I remember my parents and I began counting down
the days until I moved to Ann Arbor months ahead of time.
See GUIDE, Page 9
S TUDYING L
You came to school to study
and procure wonderful grades. Well,
maybe. No matter what your main ob-
jective at the University, you will likely
want to log some quality study hours at
onetime oranother. We know the places
to go and the places not to go. So if you
want the ins and outs of the study scene,
read this article.
Computer Registration In-
volving Student Participation (CRISP)
is the system used by the University for
registering for classes. For a handful of
students, CRISP is a breeze. For many
more, though, it is little more than a
pressure-filled crapshoot. CRISP night-
mare stories are a dime a dozen. Take a
gander at this story and you will see
The Diag? What the heck is
that? It is the place to give a speech, listen
tomusic andpass out fliers. Itisalsoagood
place to sit and read your favorite Fyodor
Dostoevsky workof literature-weather
permitting, of course. (bottom) Even
though some students use the Diag as a
simple path from one class to another,
many view it as a forumfor freedom of
expression. Peruse this piece and discover
what the Diag is all about.
Everyone knows the evils of
the "freshman fifteen." The question is,
how do you avoid the surplus baggage?
At the University, all it takes is a little
motivation and a small decision regard-
ing locale. If you want to play hoops, lift
weights or use a Stairmaster, you are in
luck. There are enough recreation cen-
ters on campus that provide the facili-
ties you need. So get off the couch, run
(don't walk)tothe CCRB, IM orNCRB
and stay away from the spare tire.
TheDepartmentof Public Safety
(DPS) prowls the University campus,
keeping a watchful eye on student hap-
penings. The departmentwas deputized in
1992 and officers carry firearms. DPS is
often a hot topic in A. Some see it as the
administration's watchdog, while others
look on it more favorably.
What do Shirley McFee,
Wayne Gretzky, Meg Ryan and Paul
Brown have in common? Not too much,
butBrown andMcFee siton the Univer-
sity Board of Regents. The Board of
Regents controls all academic and fi-
nancial matters connected to the Uni-
versity. The eight-member board deals
with issues ranging from tuition in-
creases to tenure.
What happens if you step on
the 'M' in the middle of the Diag? (top)
Is there a nuclear missile in the Burton
Tower? (middle) Is the MTV flag on the
moon really a Michigan flag? Are there
tunnels in place for nervous 'U' admin-
istrators? Ah, many of the wacky tales
regarding the University's distinguished
past and colorful present are included in
this true/false exam.
Many students are confronted
with the dilemma of whether or not they
should rush a fraternity or sorority.
Nearly 25 percent of University stu-
dents are members of a house. Many
more frequentGreek activities and gath-
erings. Like most groups or associa-
tions on campus, the Greek System has
its positive and negative attributes, at
least that is what many students say.