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April 17, 1998 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1998-04-17

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Friday, April 17, 1998

Uwe mtrbtottti mttillu

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 Dailys editorial board.
All other articles, letters and cartoons do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Michigan Daily
Tenuous connection
Diversity is important to 'U' faculty

'We're not trying to deter people from participating
or killing the spirit. We just want students to
know exactly what's going on.'
- Residence Halls Association President-elect Albert Garcia, discussing the
initiatives to improve the safety of next Tuesday's Naked Mile run

D uring the past year, allegations con-
cerning affirmative action and race-
based initiatives have been prominent at
the University. Both the College of
Literature, Science and Arts and the Law
School face lawsuits regarding these
issues in admissions procedures. Across
campus, similarly disturbing claims have
been made, but they didn't receive the
same immediate attention. Two University
professors were denied tenure status, and
both are suing the University, asserting
that this decision was made in a racially
discriminatory manner.
The University's process of granting
tenure should be very rigid. The faculty
needs to continue to represent the most
prestigious and qualified professors in the
country, and rigorous criteria for estab-
lishing tenure is necessary to maintain
this reputation. The process behind grant-
ing tenure should also continue to
involve, to some degree, a qualitative
content. Years of experience add to over-
all proficiency and should play a role in
the decisions to grant tenure.
The decision to grant tenure to profes-
sors should also continue to be based on
credentials such as prominence in their
field of study. Recommendations from
other field experts and a final evaluation
by tenured professors at the University
also are important.
There are many important criteria that
reflect ability and dedication that should
remain in consideration when tenuring
professors, but there also are issues that
are not as straightforward. The University
must remember that racial and ethnic
diversity is as important among the facul-

ty as it is among the student body. It fuels
greater breadth of thought, perspective
and educational approach. It also re-
emphasizes the importance of diversity
across campus.
Failing to have tenured professors with
diverse backgrounds limits the social
advancement of the University as a
whole. Not only could specific or narrow
methods and views trickle down to the
student body, but a less-diverse faculty
could also provide a potential cycle that
could hinder the quality of the University.
The professors being reviewed for tenure
are evaluated by already-tenured faculty
members. Without diversity on the board
of reviewers, concerns arise that the
tenured faculty body will slowly become
more and more homogeneous. As a result,
the University could suffer due to a drop
in the breadth of educational instruction
and thought.
This of course, is a hypothetical out-
look on the more drastic effects of ignor-
ing diversity when considering tenure.
University faculty must first find that an
applicant for tenure meets the strenuous
requirements and can perform at the level
expected. The rest of the University com-
munity must also have faith in the board's
ability to evaluate applicants and to award
tenure where it is most deserved.
But it is important that the overall
diversity of the faculty is considered
when making tenure decisions. University
students could suffer from a lack of
diverse backgrounds. The faculty reflects
the University as a whole, and plays an
integral part in maintaining its reputation
as an esteemed academic environment.

Ecnorcing education?
School violence should be fairly combatted'

'While students used to worry only
about petty gossip or being caught
smoking in the bathrooms, many of
today's high school students must deal
with metal detectors and daily searches
even before entering school grounds. In
some schools, teachers often find them-
selves spending as much time keeping
order in their classes as they do actually
teaching and handguns and fist fights are
as common as parent-teacher conferences
and recess. But a 13-bill package present-
ly making its way through the Michigan
state Legislature would enact several new
programs and allocate additional funds to
help curb violence in the state's public
schools. Some of the ideas behind the
package are decidedly anti-student - the
state should weed these provisions out
and pass only those that will benefit the
academic atmosphere in schools.
One of the provisions, receiving sup-
port from some state prosecutors, would
make penalties for students who commit
felonies on school grounds more severe
than if they had taken place outside the
schoolyard. While this may deter crime
on school grounds, it imposes an unfair
double standard for students. Further, it
likely would lead to students doing more
crime off their schools' campuses, possi-
bly making it harder to detect and prose-
cute the crimes. The line between civil
crime and school reprimands must be
drawn. The legal process is used and hon-
ored in this country specifically to keep
everyone, including criminals safe and
fairly treated. Law enforcement should
not play such a large role in the school
As part of the package, $75 million

vention and prevention program. The state
should ensure that these funds are chan-
neled toward counseling programs for stu-
dents rather than to pay for more police
officers to patrol the halls. Having a large
police presence seriously challenges the
learning environment that schools are sup-
posed to create. While supplying more
police officers may seem like a sure-fire
way to combat on-campus crime, it does not
counteract the psychological bases of the
criminal behavior. Solving this should be
the top priority, not just preventing the
criminal activities from occurring while
students are in class or on school grounds.
The proposed after-school initiatives, or
alternative programs, focus on giving stu-
dents something other to do than getting
into trouble. Many students who are not
involved in organized activities through the
school, like athletics or clubs, often have lit-
tle direction or responsibility and are often
unsupervised until their parents return from
work. Having a place for these students to
go could help curb after-school violence.
But money and volunteers are needed for
this type of venture, and the communities
involved should support these ideas as
much as possible.
Violence has no place in an educational
environment, and the state Legislature is
the right steps to end needless distractions.
But students also hold a responsibility to
keep the values of education. The state can
only do so much, and in the end, it still
remains the responsibility of students to
teach other students that violence is not
acceptable in an academic setting. School
control should be taken back from those
with handguns and weapons, and given to
the teachers and students who uphold the

Daily's ads
litter to the
campus' halls
Ever since I have been a
student at the University, I
have enjoyed reading the
Daily every day between
classes. Checking the scores
in the sports pages, laughing
at the comics, and trying to
complete the crossword puz-
zle have all become routines
of mine. I can honestly admit
that I am a fan of the Daily.
There is one thing, however,
that I wish it would change.
Every other week or so, an
advertising insert is placed in
the paper. These inserts usu-
ally range from credit card
application forms to vacation
guide fliers. A large portion
of these inserts usually find
their way to the floors of the
University's buildings. In the
April 15 Daily, a Jet's Pizza
flier was placed in the paper.
As I was entering Angell Hall
for my history class, it was
impossible to ignore the large
amount of these advertise-
ments lying on the floor. It
was somewhat disturbing to
see this mess, and quite hon-
estly, it annoyed me and a
number of other students.
The placement of these
inserts within the pages of
the Daily prompted me to
conduct a survey. This survey
asked 100 students two ques-
tions in an attempt to get a
general idea of how students
feel about these inserts.
When I asked students if they
ever read these inserts, 70
percent replied that they
never, or hardly ever, read
them. Then, when asked if
the students were bothered by
the cluttering of the floors by
the inserts, more than than 90
percent responded that they
were annoyed by it. I realize
that this is a very small sur-
vey, but I am sure that these
results are very representative
of how the rest of the student
body feels.
I understand that advertis-
ing is a major part of a news-
paper's success. That is why I
am not asking that these
inserts be completely
removed from the Daily. All
that I am asking is that these
advertisements be placed
within the paper so that they
do not fall out onto the
floors. The University's
buildings could be made to
look a great deal better
throughout the course of a
day by simply preventing
these inserts from falling
from the newspaper.
North Campus
needs some

busses run every 30 minutes
on the weekends but actually
according to the schedule, it's
every 20 minutes. Although
it's always late, which is even
more of an inconvenience
than it actually being on time
every 30 minutes. And yes, I
do follow the schedule reli-
giously - I admit I have a
copy in my backpack.
As for food options, let
me see, I can choose over-
priced Espresso Royale, cafe-
teria food (didn't I move out
of the dorms?) and Little
Caesar's, which is even worse
than the cafeteria.
After I choose which
establishment I'll hand over
too much money to just to
get sick, I get to wait in a
huge line. There, I ponder the
concept of North Campus.
Why the hell are students up
there anyway? (Maybe it's
just because the freaky engi-
neers, artists and musicians
aren't wanted near the "nor-
mal" Central Campus stu-
But please, the University
should give students more
timely busses and yummy,
affordable food. It would do
it if I played football, right?
is 'absolutely
Sitting in Angell Hall at
1:04 a.m., seven hours
before my CRISP date, I
think I will take this much-
needed opportunity to voice
my opinion. I think it is
absolutely ridiculous that
the University did not print
course guides for the fall
semester. I do not know
what its argument is, but I
will guess that it claims to
be better for the environ-
ment. Really, well, I know
many people who printed
the entire course guide
(sometimes more than once)
and not only was just one
side of the paper used, but
the font was so big that it
took many pages.
I bet the University also
claims that it is more conve-
nient for the students. Eeeh,
wrong again: I couldn't bring
the course guide with me to
look at during breaks, I
couldn't look at it on the
plane coming back to school,
and I couldn't sit on my floor
as I have done every other
semester with the guide and
the time schedule and work
out my class schedule.
Further, I bet the
University claims that the
online courseguide is faster
and can be updated sooner.
No, not unless I sit in a com-
puter lab instead of my room.
My modem doesn't produce
the speed I need to sit and

courseguide, of course), and
it is now charging me eight
cents per page. But then
again, my out of state
tuition must go to some-
thing, right?
AP courses
increase the
I wish to express my
wholehearted agreement
.with the April 14 editorial
concerning the need to
expand the use of Advanced
Placement courses ("Head
of the Class"). I was
pleased and surprised to see
the Daily take an interest in
the unavailability of AP
courses for many high-
school students. The bene-
fits of taking AP courses at
the high-school level cannot
be denied, yet these benefits
are being denied to many
college-bound students due
to a lack of available funds
in their respective school
districts. Thus, those stu-
dents from more economi-
cally disadvantaged areas
are unable to utilize this
form of college preparation.
The results of this inequity
in resources are not fully
realized until students are
enrolled in institutions of
higher education. It is then
that the true discrepancy in
educational attainment
between students in lower-
and upper-class districts can
be understood. The transi-
tion from high school to
college-level education in
terms of academics and
social activity can be unset-
tling, not to mention shock-
ing, for many students.
Those students who had the
advantage of taking AP
courses in high school are
able to make the academic
transition to a college set-
ting much easier. Not only
have they already been
exposed to more rigorous
course loads, they some-
times are able to embark on
their college education with
a handful of credits to put
toward their degrees. The
result is that students from
wealthier school districts
have a head start in their
pursuit of higher education.
As a high school graduate
from an extremely economi-
cally disadvantaged school
district, I suffered much
academic strain adjusting to
the University's rigorous
academics. As many of my
peers around me drew upon
their already substantial
educational basis, I found
myself struggling to catch
up to their level. This phe-
nomenon should not be hap-
pening to incoming college
students. The U.S. govern-

Every day, my
check list gets a *
little bit shorter
S ee one more game at Yost, have one
more burger at Blimpy's, walk
through the Arb on a day with more than
one complete hour of Michigan sun-
shine. Check, check, thank you El Nin.
Unfortunately, I am pretty sure that
when my check list runs, out I have to
leave. My solution
thus far has been to
add two things to
my list for every z
one I check off, but
now I'm starting to
run out of things to
I guess you could
say I'm not quite .~
ready to graduate
- but I've still got PAU
a couple of weeks SERILLA
to get over it. Ann I I~
Arbor's nice, but sI
I've got post-gradu-
ation plans in the works. God damn, I'm
graduating from college. Sure, it's sort
of exciting, but it's conflicting too.
I think the University, after graduat-
ing seniors for almost two centuries,
realizes the inner turmoil this life-
changing event causes in most potentia*
graduates (don't worry it's not that bad,
kind of like heartburn). Their answer to
these misgivings is glossy reassurance
that arrives every day in the mail.
First, it was just fliers. Every student
group on campus is putting on some
kind of free thing that nobody will go to
but hey, it was a nice thought. The
University itself gives plenty of
reminders about up-coming events,
directions on how to go about purchas-
ing a cap and gown, or picking up com-
mencement tickets, etc.
Graduation is May 2. The ceremony
begins promptly at 9:30 a.m. in
Michigan Stadium. Don't sleep through
it like you did for all your classes bbre
2:30 p.m. this semester or trust us,
you'l regret it. Sincerely the
Commencement Board.
Then of course everybody and their
sister is hitting you up to purchase knick
knacks to remind you of your college@
career. Rings, plaques, class of '98
teapots with matching maize and blue
doilies. Even when it's for a good cause,
I'm not sure that anyone really cares
about getting this stuff.
Graduation good. Job well done.
Family, friends, proud. Buy brick for
stadium. Love, the Athletic Department.
Some of the mail is sort of like get-
ting a postcard from one of those people
who is under the impression that the
are friends with you, and they send you
letters from every vacation they have
ever taken.
Congratulations on your graduation.
We will miss your checks with the fish
on them, they were really cool. Keep in
touch, your pals in the Cashier's Office.
You would think that eventually, all of
these offices, groups, departments and
organizations would run out of things to
say - and yet they still find the time t
put more crap in my mailbox than
Columbia House or every pizza place in
Ann Arbor combined. Lately, I've start-
ed pretty much throwing the stuff away
without reading it, but the other day this
one piece grabbed my eye. I'm not sure
that I should share its contents with you;
in fact, doing so could greatly endanger
my own life. But I believe it is my jour-
nalistic duty to take that risk and deliv-
er you an excerpt from this rather dis-
turbing letter.
Hey, we hear you're graduating and
we think that's just super. We think you

are super. In fact, you're full of super-
ness. You are superness incarnate raised
to an infinite power. Our pals in the
Cashier's Office told us you have really
coolfish on your checks. Unfortunately,
we have not yet received a fish check
from you - we expect one soon. We've
asked you nicely before, real nicely -
why didn't you respond? Did you think
we wouldn't notice? Seriously, don't
make us come look for you - wherever
you go, whatever you do, we can find
you. If you move, change you name,
destroy all records of your existence, it
won't be enough.
Remember that terrorist, Carlos the
Jackal? The CIA, FBI and law enforce-
ment officials from around the world
tracked him for years, not one clue. We
found him in 36 hours, then he wrote us*
a check, and he didn't even graduate
from the University. His checks had this
serene mountain vista on them, very
nice - a hell of a lot better than stupid
fish. Anywayjustfork it over and no one
will get hurt, OK?
Oh my God. You know what you did
now? You just made us mad, really
freakin' mad. You d better pray to God
that you dropped this letter somewhere
around the Carlos the Jackal part and
ran to the mailbox screaming for for-
giveness with your check in a sealed,
legal-sized, self-addressed envelope.
Otherwise, you are about to find out a
whole new definition for pain and suf-
fering. Warmest Wishes, the University

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