The Michigan Daily - Friday, September 5, 1997 5
Continued from Page 1
ships and were forced to drop out because they are not
minorities,' Jaye said.
Whyman, another of the lawsuit's organizers, said
the University's affirmative action policies are "plain
and simple discrimination."
When told about the potential lawsuit, SNRE Prof.
Bunyan Bryant said the University "is being dealt a
"I feel that given the makeup of society, in the
future we need to make sure there are opportunities
for all people to get an education," Bryant said.
Bryant said the University's affirmative action pro-
grams not only consider racial backgrounds, but they
also give priority to children of alumni, women and
"There are other kinds of affirmative action that
take place," Bryant said. "The majority of people who
benefit from affirmative action are white women, but
the focus has been on African Americans, as if we are
taking over everything.
"The race issue clouds the other affirmative action
But Greve said the University of Michigan has
characteristics that make it a prime target for a
"The more competitive the institution, the more
egregious the preferences are bound to be. The larger
the institution, the larger number of potential victims,"
Greve said. "Those two factors combined explain why
Michigan is more likely to be sued than any other
Other local figures also argue that the University's
admissions policies illegally and unfairly discriminate
by race. Philosophy Prof. Carl Cohen has done exten-
sive research into the University's admissions policies.
He requested admissions figures from the University
in 1995, and said he ultimately needed to use
Michigan's Freedom of Information Act to obtain the
place that t
Continued from Page 1 now is pren
reduce $200 million from the hospitals' are issues tf
budget in three years. Omenn faces the all three fro
final task of cutting $70 million. al and clini
"It is true that academic institu- mission. He
tions' costs are higher than their com- before he m
petitors. Costs have to be reduced," Omenn e
Omenn said. "Substantial reductions University
Chen found that
were given priority
"Some people at the University are ashamed of the
admissions policies," Cohen said.
In a report Cohen wrote based on the admissions
statistics, he found that minorities were given special
preference in admission to various University
Cohen's study compared minority and non-minori-
ty applicants with a grade point average between 2.8
and 2.99 and an SAT score between 1100 and 1190
applying to LSA in 1994. All minority applicants with
those grades and scores were admitted, while 11 per-
cent of non-minorities in that category were admitted,
"Admission practices at the University of Michigan
show very marked preferences by race and ethnic cat-
egory," Cohen wrote in the report.
Cohen stressed that the University administrators
who establish the admissions policies are not trying to
intentionally cause any harm.
"The people do so with honorable ends in view,"
LSA sophomore Maija Cirulis said that to create
diversity, there are alternatives to setting separate
"Affirmative action is designed to create diversity,
but the solution should be heavier recruiting, not dif-
ferent standards," Cirulis said.
Other students, however, said they disagree with the
"I definitely do not agree with (the lawsuit)," said
Michigan Student Assembly President Mike Nagrant.
"The lawsuit is politically motivated."
MSA Vice President Olga Savic said affirmative
action is important in a University setting because it
helps foster racial understanding.
"I think the University needs to keep in mind peo-
ple's backgrounds when admitting students," Savic
said. "Diverse backgrounds are important to maintain
an open dialogue on campus."
The University's current affirmative action
policies, Jaye said, are "unfair, evil and un-
"The U of M bureaucrats are bullies," Jaye said.
"Because some students are not minorities, they don't
Ann Arbor-based state legislators said the lawsuit is
nothing more than an effort for the involved state rep-
resentatives to promote themselves.
"David will be able to milk this issue for eight
years," said state Rep. Mary Schroer (D-Ann
Arbor), who noted that Jaye is a potential candi-
date for the state Senate seat vacated after the
death of Doug Carl. "We all have to suffer because
of David's stupid causes."
State Rep. Liz Brater (D-Ann Arbor) said affirina-
tive action fulfills an important role at the University,
and she added that the legislators are attempting to
micromanage the University. She said the state consti-
tution specifically states that public universities are
autonomous bodies and should not be regulated by the
"Every affirmative action program is attempting to
address inequities," Brater said. "These representa-
tives are grandstanding by filing this lawsuit."
But whether the lawsuit goes ahead this fall or
some other time in the future, Greve said the
University of Michigan is a "sitting duck" for a
"Sooner or later, it will happen," Greve said. "It is
only a matter of time."
If you would like more information about the class
action lawsuit, call Rep. David Jaye at (517) 373-6843.
~'Engineering researchers Johann Boren,
cane that will be another navigation de
stein and Iwan Ulrich have developed a
evice for the blind.
By Heather Wiggin will take at least three years until the
Daily Staff Reporter cane is available to the blind commu-
For visually impaired people, tech- nity, although he is concerned about
nology may soon make the world an continued funding for his research.
easier place to navigate. Borenstein's grant from Whitaker,
Thanks to two University scien- a private organization, expires in a
mists, the blind will soon be led by a year. He hopes a company will take
battery-powered navigation tool, sponsorship of the GuideCane, so the
instead of the traditional white cane invention can be further researched
or the popular seeing eye dog. and marketed in the future.
The brainchild of Engineering Ulrich said he and Borenstein were
researchers Johann Borenstein and "really lucky" they could translate their
Iwan Ulrich, GuideCane uses both sen- research into a tool for the blind.
sors and a built-in computer to direct The cane will help visually
the user's path around obstacles, impaired people like Carrol Jackson
Weighing in at only eight pounds, the of Detroit, the executive director of
GuideCane is light and easy to push. Upshaw Institute for the Blind.
Unlike other guide devices, this one Jackson, who tried one of the prelim-
Idoesn't have fleas, requires no training inary versions of the cane, said he
and costs less than the alternatives. was pleased with the overall results.
Borenstein said the GuideCane has "It's a very significant advance in
an upright handle with direction con- adding to the mobility option for
trols on the top and two wheels at the those of us who are blind and visual-
base. At the bottom of the cane, the ly impaired," Jackson said.
eight ultra-sonic sensors are arranged Jackson said there are two major dif-
in a semi-circle and relay information ficulties that impact the blind - loss of
to a built-in computer. communication and loss of mobility.
"(The sensors) look into different And for the elderly, which make up
directions and see whether there is an the majority of the blind population,
Iobstacle or not," Borenstein said. "The the GuideCane will be easier to care
computer finds a pathway around for than a seeing eye dog, Jackson said.
obstacles and steers the steering "This new electronics technology
wheels such as to follow the path." holds all kinds of possibilities,"
Borenstein and Ulrich oredicted it Jackson said.
ve so many issues in this
oask him to prioritize them
mature," Trester said. "There
hat need to be dealt with on
nts - academic, education-
cal. All are important to the
needs to learn much more
akes an agenda."
arned his M.D. at Harvard
and a Ph.D. in genetics
b e e n
occur in this
lenge in politi-
cal and gov-
cles is, 'How
do you get
"I'm keen to see
play a national
leadership role in
staff at the
Earn $6.25-$9.O/ hr
Public Health Research Firm needs telephone
interviewers ASAP for major health research
projects. Starting pay rates bases on experi-
ence and/or education. Mostly evenings and
weekends. 20-40 hours per week available.
these kind of
- Gilbert Omenn
VP for Medical Affairs
in 1969 as a
ty while cutting costs?"' he said. "This
is a very different question than how do
you get the lowest possible costs."
He emphasized the importance of
examining options of alliance and
networking with businesses and other
institutions, as well as furthering the
efficiency of the University's
Managed Health Organization - M-
"I'm keen to see us play a national
leadership role in these kind of devel-
opments; "Omenn said.
Kenneth Trester, director of Planning
and Marketing for the Medical Center,
said it may take time for Omenn to
develop his game plan because he is
signed on with the faculty in 1971.
He has received awards from the
National Institute of Health Research
Career Development and the Howard
Hughes Medical Institute.
Please stop by ITS @ 209 E. Washington, 2nd Floor
or call: (313)994-0003
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