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September 08, 1998 - Image 28

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1998-09-08

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2B - The Michigan Daily - New Student Edition - September 8, 1998

Even when everythlng
changes, stay in control
Some people say there are no guarantees in life. They're wrong. Now
that you're here at the University of Michigan, you should know that
one thing is an undeniable certainty: In the next three, four or five
years that you are here, you will make decisions and encounter situations
that will reveal who you are, what you will become, and in general, change
your life.
When I arrived in Ann Arbor three years ago, I had expectations of
spending my days in practice rooms or on stage furthering a career as an
opera diva, my summers in summer stock or the occasional off-Broadway
musical, and my Saturday nights dancing 'till dawn with my roommates
and cursing the male sex.
Well, since then, I've packed up my sheet music, traded my vocal perfor-
mance major for political science, spent this past summer in a Texas city
that calls itself "cowtown," joined The Michigan Daily (which means I
rarely see my roommates) and even fallen in love.
My life has taken some turns in the past three years, but change is really
not all that unusual around here.
This campus is full of so many possibilities that most students can't help
but take advantage of one or two: joining the Daily, MSA, an intramural
volleyball team, MUSKET, the Greek system ...
The experiences you have and the people you meet
here can make just as big an impact in less than five
years than your family and friends have in almost 20.
As your life is changing, however, don't be afraid to
keep some things the same.
I recently met a young woman named Jasmine who
travels around Texas, promoting a program called
Dream Catchers and encouraging young people to
LAURIE make what she calls "dream books."
MAYK These books are filled with pictures of everything
From from sports cars to wedding dresses to happy families.
the Boss Think about these things every time you make a
decision, and realize how your choice will affect your
chance of getting them, she says to young people.
Jasmine is a strong believer in sexual abstinence before marriage.
No doubt, this choice has earned some raised eyebrows from friends, but
it doesn't seem to bother her.
She has vivid memories of the experience that made her decision for
When Jasmine's best friend from grade school came home from college
preannt, their friendship disintegrated.
Her friend was too ashamed even to talk to Jasmine about her painful
Her friend's pain came despite an upbringing similar to her own, and
despite a loving and supportive family.
At that point, Jasmine decided that nothing, not even family or friends,
was more important than who you are "in the dark."
In the dark, you are alone and you make your own decisions for your
life, she said.
Jasmine's life changed forever when she and her friend went off to col-
At age 18, she didn't expect to suddenly have a pregnant friend and a
cause to support.
But what Jasmine learned from the situation was solely her decision; she
made careful choices about how she would let this affect her life.
I wouldn't recommend attacking your new roommate's stack of
Entertainment Weeklys to illustrate your "dream book," but Jasmine's idea
is iot a bad one.
Willingness to try new things and take risks with a new major or a new
girlfriend is one thing, giving up lifelong dreams or personal values is
Don't be afraid of the new people and experiences on this campus that
can change your life - but don't be controlled by them, either.
-Keep a "dream book," keep an old friend for advice, and most impor-
tant, keep control.
- Laurie Mayk is the Editor-In-Chief of The Michigan Dailh.
She can be reached via e-mail at ljmaykdwumich.edu.

The University Board of Regents did not approve a Michigan Student Assembly fee increase that would have raised money to support the student regent campaign.
Despite the setback, MSA continues to lobby for a voice on the board.


- ui iil(U1ICU-

By Jack Schillaci
Iaily Editorial Page Editor
On the third Thursday and Friday
of every month, eight men and
women of various political persua-
sions gather in the Fleming
Administration Building.
Joined by a couple dozen
University administrators, students,
faculty members and newspaper
reporters, this group sets out to make
some of the most important decisions
on campus. They guide the
University's policy, its academic
direction and in many ways, students'
But do students have any real influ-
ence on the outcome of these pro-
ceedings? Nope.
The University Board of Regents
are elected by citizens of the state of
Michigan, yet students, arguably
their most important constituents,
have as much influence over them as
a farmer living in Escanaba.
When they hide behind the doors
of the Regents' Room in an "execu-
tive session" -- which they really,
really like to do -- there is nothing
that even a mob of angry students can
do to find out what's going on inside
(they've been known to use the

University's underground tunnel net-
work to escape such a scene).
It would be helpful to have a stu-
dent arguing something besides dol-
lars, cents and the bottom line at the
annual tuition increase regents' meet-
ing. It would be nice to know that a
student had some sort of input into
the appointment of important admin-
istrative positions.
The reason that such representation
is out of reach for students is because
of an all-too-literal interpretation of
the Michigan Constitution. Having a
student on the board would allow
them to grant themselves degrees
which is viewed as a conflict of inter-
est. But since the granting of degrees
is really little more than a rubber-
stamping activity by the regents and
is only done at the recommendation
of individual academic units, it is
unlikely that an overzealous student
regent would start using his or her
power to grant himself or herself
numerous degrees.
But because of these legalistic
semantics, the only way to oet a stu-
dent in on the regents' discussions,
the Constitution would have to be
For years, the Michigan Student

Assembly's Student Regent Task
Force has made strides to give stu-
dents greater influence over the
board's activities. It has gotten so far
as to have a bill on the floor of the
state legislature - only to have its
sponsor bail on them.
But as of late, the task force has
taken a new route. Rather than con-
tinuing to press the University
administration and Lansing, the task
force has decided to push the student
body into a hefty fee to raise the
required signatures to get the amend-
ment on the state ballot.
The "Yes! Yes! Yes!" campaign, an
annoying, expensive and excessively
glitzy and cutesy campaign led by
now-MSA Treasurer Bram Elias,
managed to garner enough student
votes to approve an increase to stu-
dent fees by 54.50 per semester.
In order to get the fee enacted, the
regents would have had to approve it.
But the board, not willing to give up
their power, have been none-too-will-
ing to approve the hike.
Even if the fee had been voted on,
the battle would be far from over. The
task force would use the money to
hire a "headhunting" agency to go
out and find 100,000-plus state citi-

zens to put their name behind th
movement. Assuming it finds enough
people with a vested interest in the
University's student representation,
said agency will charge the task force
Sl a head, quickly eating up thou-
sands of student dollars.
In the past nine months, the task
force's members have put most, if not
all, of their effort behind this cam--
paign, which is at best a ricket,
bridge over a fast-moving stream.,*
They haven't tried to build coali-
tions with other state universities'
student governments to lobby for a
Legislature-ordered referendum, nor
have they spent adequate time edu-
cating the student body about the
benefits a student regent would
bring -- after all, more than 80 per-
cent of students stayed away from
the polls in the Spring 1998 MSA
With the inevitable demise of the
student-fee plan, it is time for the
task force to reprioritize.
A student regent is an attainable
goal - but only if students spends
their time wisely pursuing feasible
options. By focusing on the possible,
MSA could produce a very tangible
and meaningful product.


Author: Robert D. Honigman
You'll invest thousands of dollars and years of your life in a col-
lege education. Wouldn't you like to know what's beneath the
Need a guide for you treacherous trek through the trackless
trails of higher education? Read University Secrets:.Your
Guide to Surviving a College Education by Robert D.
Honigman for an in-depth look at the University of Michigan
and its failure as an institution.
Sold at Shaman Drum, Borders and on the web at Amazon.com,
BamesandNoble.com, and Universitysecrets.com

AAPD programs reach out to the community

Wishing Students a Successful Fall Term
The following is a list of the groups and workshops being offered
at Counseling and Psychological Services this fall. All groups
and workshops are free and available to currently enrolled UM
students. For more information about a group or workshop, stop
by our office, 3100 Michigan Union, or call us at (734) 764-8312.
Also, please visit our web site: http://www.umich.edu/-caps.
" African-American Graduate Women Support/Therapy Group
" Beating the Blues: Learn ways to control mild depression in this six
week group. Call for a pre-group interview.
" Dealing with the Dissertation Process
* Food For Thought: A four week eating and body image-workshop.
" Gay and Bisexual Men's Therapy Group: Call for a pre-group
" Graduate Black Male Dialogue Group: Group meets in Trotter
+ My Family/My Self (structured workshop)
" New Begininnings - Exploring Same-Sex Attractions
+ Procrastination Workshop: A four week structured workshop.
« Relationship Group
« Relaxation Training Workshop (drop-in group)
« SelIf Help Groups: AA, Al-Anon, Over-eaters Anonymous.
« Study Skills Workshop: Two separate sections will be offered, drop-
in anytime.
A Systematic Approach to Reading and Studying
Writing Essays and Research Papers
" Survivin& Your Loss
" Test Anxiety Workshop
" Thinking About Drinking (less): A three week group to help
students look at their use of alcohol. Call for a pre-group interview.

By David Wallace
Daily Editorial Page Writer
Police officers nationwide often
find themselves the subject of criti-
cism, be it from community activists,
rap artists or the lawbreakers they
While some of these complaints
are justified, they often overshadow
the fine service police departments
perform for their communities.
Here in Ann Arbor the Ann Arbot
Police Department deserv es praise
for its programs that reach out to the
community, and curious residents
should participate in some of the
Many people who live and work in
Ann Arbor probably do not know
much about the everyday operation
of the police department.
In hopes of educating the public,
AAPD offers the Ann Arbor
Citizens' Police Academy.
This program increases public
awareness of the various facets of
Through demonstrations and
explanations of procedures, the
AAPD should continue to soften the
somewhat adversarial relationship
between citizens and the police.
University students in particular
look upon the police with a suspi-
cious eye.
But students should not ignore the
efforts the AAPD makes to work
with them.
Drinking is a serious problem
affecting the University and AAPD
officers conduct talks with fraterni-

ties and sororities to educate mem-
bers about alcohol abuse.
In the face of high-profile alcohol-
related deaths on other college cam-
puses last year, AAPD should contin-
ue to keep its lines of communica-
tion open with students so that such
tragedies do not occur here at the
AAPD officials also deserves credit
for their handling of University events
such as the Naked Mik
Fhe officers presen,,t makes tht
event a good deal safer and they do
not interfere in what is essentially a
harmless, though technically illegal,
Participating students worry less
about groping and other assaults
because officers are nearby.
AAPD should apply its methods
for handling the Naked Mile to other
instances of crowd control, where
officers' responses have sometimes
left a great deal to be desired.
Sadly, each academic year general-
ly has its share of assaults, sexual
and otherwise.
To reduce the number of incidents,
students would be well-served to
attend the Personal Safety Program
- a self-defense clinic offered by
These courses stress prevention as
much as defense, resulting in stu-
dents that understand how to make
themselves less vulnerable.
An educated campus makes for a
safer campus.
AAPD should now concentrate on
improving its own procedures in

New programs instituted by the Ann Arbor Police Department have improved their
image among the city's residents.

areas such as crowd management -
perhaps using the Naked Mile as a
As a part of that improvement,
AAPD should work with the public
to find a solution that will prevent
occurrences of violence.
To create a safer, more friendly
environment, AAPD and Ann Arbor

citizens need to work together.
AAPD can teach citizens a great deal
about preventing crimes antd
Citizen participation is necessary
to suggest ways AAPD can improve
its procedures.
Working together, Ann Arbor cal
become a better community.



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