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November 05, 1997 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1997-11-05

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, November 5, 1997

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420 Maynard Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Edited and managed by
students at the
University of Michigan

Editor in Chief
Editorial Page Editor


Unless otherwise noted, unsigned editorials reflect the opinion of the majority of the Daily's editorial hoard. A ll
other articles, letters and cartoons do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Michigan Daily.
The bi souaeef
Class of 2001 Is too large for 'U'

'This Is a green light to all other states that want to
copy Proposition 209. At our count, there were 26
other states in some stage of progress.'
- Stanford Law Prof Kathleen Sullivan, explaining the impact of the Supreme
Court's refusal to hear a challenge to Proposition 209
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T he University released its official stu-
dent count last Tuesday. The report
showed that the class of 2001 is the largest
ever admitted to the University. This is evi-
dent in many ways on campus. At the
beginning of the school year, students
found a shortage of University housing
space, and many introductory-level classes
filled up very quickly, some even by early
July. If the upward trend in admission is to
continue, the University will need to make
some adjustments. Presently, there is not
enough space for so many people at the
Part of the reason for the overcrowding
is the fact that, in general, high school stu-
dents are applying to fewer colleges than in
the past, and they are more likely to enroll
in the University if accepted. But because
more students have enrolled in the past few
years, class sizes have also been higher
than anticipated. University officials admit
that it is difficult to predict how many
accepted students will enroll. The trends of
the past several years demonstrate that cur-
rent acceptance-enrollment projections
need to be adjusted.
The University should re-evaluate its
admissions process in order to correct the
equation. For instance, the University
should compensate by reducing the num-
ber of students admitted; as the situation
stands now, enrollment has increased while
admittance has stayed about the same.
Considering this trend as part of the admis-
sions process would help reduce class size
and ease the problem of overcrowding. The
University should make better use of the

waitlist to ensure that every available spot
is filled. Rather than admit too many stu-
dents, it should trim the waitlist as students
enroll or reject the University's offer.
Barring a reduction in the number of
students admitted, it is important that the
University find a better way to accommo-
date an increasingly large demand for
classes. One possibility is to change the
number of core classes. Although many
departments save sections for first-year
students, there are only so many sections.
This year, many classes were full by early-
to mid-July, particularly popular core
classes such as math and English. At the
very least, the University should inform
incoming students that classes tend to fill
up quickly, to alleviate frustration and
direct their energies to planning viable cur-
In addition, the lack of communication
between admissions and housing has
resulted in an annual, familiar shortage of
housing space. The admissions office con-
sistently burdens the housing office with
the overcrowding problem; admissions
brings too many students to campus and
leaves the housing office to deal with
The logical long-term solution to lack
of residence hall space is construction -
but there is very little undeveloped land on
Central Campus on which to build a new
residence hall. Until a long-term plan is
established, admissions, housing and acad-
emic departments must work together to
develop a temporary program to accommo-
date large incoming classes.

Putting schools first
Tests cannot solve educational problems

L ast week at Chicago's Oscar Mayer
Elementary School, President Bill
Clinton praised Mayor Richard Daley for
turning the city's school system around.
The president also mentioned other educa-
tion success stories in cities such as New
York, Philadelphia and San Francisco. In
addition, he used the forum to rally support
for his education policy improvements,
which include national testing standards.
He urged more school districts to promote
students to the next grade level on the basis
of academic achievement, and not because
of social pressure. But when planning edu-
cational reforms, Clinton and local school
administrators must realize that restructur-
ing educational systems is the most realis-
tic way to increase achievement.
Allowing students to graduate or
advance to the next grade without obtain-
ing the proper requisite educational skills
is not serving the students' long-term inter-
ests. Students will perform better in the
workforce knowing that they received a
real education, rather than just being
pushed up the educational ladder.
Moreover, employers would put more
weight on a high school diploma if high
school graduates were to achieve a defini-
tive educational standard.
Clinton has taken the first step on the
long road toward improving the nation's
education system by praising those schools
and cities where specific problems are
being addressed and fixed. The ability to
recognize flaws in the system is one of the
most difficult aspects of this fight - urg-
ing schools to stop the blind promotion of
students does not really address the crucial
Imposing national testing standards as

advancement is based does not solve the
educational system's problems.
Standardized testing has serious negative
consequences because schools and teach-
ers use different educational techniques --
different cities and school systems provide
different learning environments that
address a variety of needs. In addition,
many urban schools may not have the
resources to educate their students as thor-
oughly as wealthier suburban schools.
Some students have another inherent disad-
vantage, studies indicate that standardized
tests tend to be biased against minorities.
Standardized tests have many flaws -
their implementation will not solve current
problems in the nation's schools.
Clinton and legislators need to look at
the nation's schools from a broader per-
spective in an effort to identify problems
and formulate solutions. Daley prevented
students who failed to meet academic stan-
dards from advancing to the next grade
level or graduating - this is a first step to
combat the system's problems. But this
quick-fix policy does not address why
Chicago students are not receiving an ade-
quate education the first time through each
grade. The root of the problem is not cor-
rected, nor has it been identified if Daley
and Clinton think this legislation is a suffi-
cient answer to a complex educational
Too many problems in our society are
never corrected because those in the posi-
tion of offering solutions fail to recognize
and improve the source of the problem,
resulting in patchwork public policy that
does not accomplish significant effects..
Political leaders need to step up to the plate
and enact sound legislation that will begin

need more
Code info
In light of the recent surge
in publicity about the inner
workings of the Code of
Student Conduct, I thought
that as a student and as some-
one who works in the Office
of Student Conflict
Resolution, I could offer some
worthwhile perspectives on
the Code process. I will start
off by stating that I am not
opposed to the existence of a
written policy on the non-aca-
demic behavior of University
students, a.k.a. "the Code:'
One of the major concerns
raised has been the negative
consequences of confidential-
ity. For one, I am relieved that
the privacy of my student
record, as federally mandated,
is respected and protected by
OSCR. I am relieved that,
should I become involved in
the Code process, I would
control who could access
information about me. While
the specifics of a particular
case are not disclosed to the
public, the people who do
need to know are informed.
This includes the accused stu-
dent, the complaining witness
(who filed the complaint) and
the resolution board members
serving on the case.
Furthermore, any member
of the University community
has access to the public
record. The public record
details for each case the
alleged violations, the results
(responsible or no) and the
sanctions imposed, if applica-
I think the role of the stu-
dent panel is another major
area of concern. Under the
Code, arbitration by a student
panel accounted for only one-
sixth of the cases brought to
resolution in 1996. The choice
of the resolution method is a
right given to the accused stu-
dent, who has the option of
selecting mediation, a resolu-
tion officer arbitration (led by
a trained faculty of staff mem-
ber) or a student panel arbitra-
Mediation, however,
requires agreement of both
parties. The pool of students
who can serve on a panel is
selected by each college's and
school's student government.
The students, faculty and staff
must participate in a full day
of training, as well as a simu-
lated arbitration, before being
eligible. During an arbitration,
the panel or the resolution
officer is responsible for gath-
ering information presented
by the complaining witness,
the accused student, witnesses
and by written reports of the
Once the panel or resolu-
tion officer feels all of the
resources are exhausted, it
must then determine the facts

resources (i.e., MSA, other
universities) and make an
informed judgment.
are looking
for diversity
One of the arguments
most used by those opposed
to affirmative action is that
schools should choose
entrants on merit only, and by
using affirmative action pro-
grams that choose people on
race or other criteria, schools
risk lowering their academic
standards by admitting
unqualified candidates.
This argument misses an
incredibly important point:
what ultimately decides a
school's ranking is the value
employers put on the school's
graduates, not on their test
scores. In other words, the
"top schools" like Michigan,
Harvard, MIT and Stanford
are top schools because their
graduates have developed
skills employers value.
Anyone who reads
Business Week, the Wall
Street Journal or any other
business publication will
notice that American busi-
nesses are plunging overseas
at an incredible rate, and that
most of the fastest growing
markets for American compa-
nies are areas of the world
where people of color pre-
dominate. In addition, the
demographics of America are
changing, leading to a great
increase in the purchasing
power of American minorities.
If you were a prospective
employer with a $100 million
contract at stake, who would
you most likely hire? A stu-
dent who had a 3.5 but no
experience dealing with peo-
ple of different ethnic groups
or culture, or a student with a
3.4 who has studied with peo-
ple of different backgrounds,
debated ideas with them and
has some idea of what to
expect in the areas of the
world where the fastest
growth is happening?
Whether you disagree with
affirmative action or not,
diversity is clearly important.
Companies will most likely
go to schools who produce
employees that will best help
their businesses. As the econ-
omy becomes more global,
this will increasingly mean
schools where students are
exposed to a diverse student
body. This is something affir-
mative action clearly provides.
Asians are not

Our race seems to hinder
acceptance into some univer-
sities. How else can you
explain the fact that Asian
Americans rejected from
UCLA and UC-Berkeley,
schools with large Asian
American populations, have
the highest GPA and stan-
dardized test scores out of all
other applicant groups? It
was predicted that one of the
side-effects of Prop. 209 was
to drastically increase the
number of Asian Americans
in the UC system.
Now that Prop. 209 is out
of the way, I wonder if Rep.
David Jaye (R-Monroe) has
closely scrutinized
Michigan's admissions for-
mula. From what I saw, race
does not play that enormous
a role in the process. I think
it was equated the same as
in-state residency or legacy,
with overall GPA, SAT/ACT
test scores, high school acad-
emic reputation and number
of AP courses playing a
much more substantial role.
column was
I am writing in response to
Dawn Harris' comments con-
cerning James Miller's col-
umn ("Keep God's code at
home - and far away from
legislation" 10/8/97).
Personally, I found Miller's
thoughts to be rather stimulat-
ing. Too often, we as human
beings get too caught up in a
movement or a belief that may
cloud our God-given reason-
ing powers. Too often, good
Christians are fooled into
thinking that we can change
this world into a better place.
Of course, we may impact
others, but ultimately each
man swims for himself. I am
not contesting Harris' defense
of the Promise Keepers.
However, her comments con-
cerning Miller's nightmares of
a marriage between church
and state are in themselves
How many examples do
we have of the abuse of power
by the unification of church
and state? Too many.
Immediately, the Catholic
domination and Inquisition_
come to mind, where the
"sheep" slaughtered the
"wolves." Although God may
not force a loving response
from humans, humans may
and often do force a response
from other humans. Thus,
America stands on the firm
belief that church and state
must be separated at all costs!
I must say, however, that
there is a necessary distinction
between Christians and true
Christians. The latter look at

A confession to
the man i the
big white house:
.I love you, Lee
I know it's irrational. I know it's stu-
pid. I know he's married. I know
hell never leave her. I know we'
never be together. In spite of all that
stands between us,
I'm still crazy
about Lee
I wasn't looking
to fall in love. To
be honest, the
changing of the
presidential guard
didn't really excite
me that much.
One stuffy, slight
ly overweight, JAMES
higher education MILLER
middle manage- MILLER
ment meatball ON TAP
leaves, another
one comes in. Ho hum.
But why did it have to be him? That
raffish, tousled hair. The dapper law
professor suits. It was more than 4
could bear. I was hooked from the first
time I saw him in the Daily. Now my
heart is filled with Lee.
How do I love Lee? Let me count the
ways. Ha ha.
Before DPS taps my phone and my
transcript gets taken outside and shot,
let me explain. Think about former
University President Duderstadt for a',
minute. Do you think that anyone
would have bothered to write fake loy
notes in the Daily for him? Do yot
think anyone would have thought it
was funny? Would anyone have cared
either way? This is President Lee's
The reason that I feel comfortable in
making semi-inappropriate, semi-
comic advances toward the admiral of
the fleet is twofold.
First, is that he seems like a genuine-
ly nice guy. He reminds me of that on
hipster friend everybody's dad has.
The guy with a Miles Davis record and
"Suck the Fystem" T-shirt stashed in
the attic somewhere. Besides, can you
picture Duderstadt making a 5K run
on his inaugural day? Maybe if he
were chasing an ice cream truck.
This extends into how he looks at the
University as well. On the day Tom
Goss announced the interim basketball
coach, President Lee went to the open-
ing of a new art gallery in East Qua
featuring the photographic work of
Peter and David Turnley, two interna-
tionally recognized photojournalists
and RC alumni. In his first few months
as el presidente, he has attended
University symphony concerts and
football games (sitting in the student
section no less). He seems to be gen-
uinely interested in the activities and
interests of the student body.
Second, he has a grasp of what
University education should be. In an'
age when university presidents are
forced to be fund-raising plow horses
and smooch the behinds of yahoo, tax
cheat, business school alums who
want half of campus named after them,
President Lee knows something that a
lot of people don't: namely, this is not
a trade school. History, art, music, lit-
erature and the other gay sciences
don't exist just to drive us screamin
to the arms of Bauer, the B- school an
Brooks Brothers.
The size of your paycheck upon
graduation is not an indicator of the
success of your undergraduate career,

nor does the University system exist to
pump the job market with HTML
authors and other soulless program
jockeys. We are here to learn how to
If he didn't believe this, why woul
he champion the construction of a the-
ater in honor of Arthur Miller? "Death
of a Salesman" doesn't have any mar-
keting options, no action figures, no
World Wide Web implications. "The
Crucible" doesn't teach us about
homepage making or about "team
building" or "paradigms." What we
can learn from John Proctor or Willy
and Biff Loman is expensive, intangi-
ble, difficult to explain, hard to fun
decidedly unmacho and vital to ou
development as people.
If he didn't believe this, why would
he bother teaching undergraduates
about the First Amendment, free
speech and all that good stuff? (Mr.
President, if you really are reading
this, I truly respect you for teaching a
class of undergrads. Because, between
you, me and the lamp post, I know that_
you must have one or two of the mo
irritating kind of student. The kind o
poli-sci-majoring, wing-tip-wearing
bozo who carries a briefcase at the age.
of 19. The kind of guy who actually
hops up and down in his seat, waving
his hand in the air and making little
"ooh ooh" noises every time you ask a
question. Couldn't you just smack


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