The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, April 5, 2005 -3
in the media
The Institute for Research on Women
and Gender presents writer and scholar
Katha Pollitt today from 3:30 to 5 p.m. in
the Hussey Roomof the Michigan League.
Pollitt's work has appeared in numer-
ous publications, such as The New York
Times, The New Yorker and Harper's
Magazine and she is the recent recipient
of the Michigan Media Award, an annual
award honoring journalists who excel in
their coverage of gender issues. During
the lecture, Pollitt will discuss sexism in
the media and its impact on women.
'U' holds Leadership
The Michigan Leadership Award cer-
emony will be held today from 4 to 6 p.m.
in the Ballroom of the Michigan Union.
For 25 years, these awards have honored
the contributions of students and student
organizations in categories such as Pro-
gram of the Year and Outstanding Student
Leader. The office of Student Activities
and Leadership, Division of Student
Affairs is sponsoring the event.
After pouring water on someone and
punching a man in the face, an Ann Arbor
woman was arrested for drunk driving
early Saturday, according to the Ann
Arbor Police Department.
A 25-year-old man said he was eating
at the Jimmy John's in the 1200 block of
South University Avenue when he saw the
23-year-old woman pour water on another
person. The man said when he asked her
what her problem was, she approached
him and punched him above the eye.
Police said they saw the woman leaving
in her car, pulled her over and arrested her
for drunk driving.
Police said the man had red marks on
his face but did not require medical atten-
tion. The man said he did not want to press
A woman said she heard an intruder
attempting to enter her home in the
700 block of Arbor Street early Sunday
through a bathroom window off the fire
escape, according to AAPD.
The woman said she could hear sham-
poo bottles being knocked from the show-
er ledge at around 3 a.m. The woman said
she went to look in the bathroom and the
window was partially open.
Nothing was stolen and police said
Celebrating separately, graduating together
Seniors prepare to take
walk toward Rackham in
By Breeanna Hare
Daily Staff Reporter
On the weekend of April 29, about 5,000 Univer-
sity undergraduates will become alumni, according
to the University's statistics on graduation rates. In a
crowd of that size, it can be easy to feel lost.
For this reason, many students will also participate
in separate commencements designed for specific
multicultural groups within the University.
Most students participate in smaller communities
at the University but have never been able to incorpo-
rate that kinship into the larger graduation ceremony.
Minority groups across campus, therefore began
to hold separate commencements - including the
Black Celebratory, La Celebracion Latina and the
The oldest of the three, Black Celebratory - or
Black Celeb - began in 1993 to "celebrate the com-
monalties and differences that characterize the expe-
riences of African Americans and other students at
the University," according to Black Celeb's website.
Funded by the Office of Academic and Multicultural
Initiatives, a committee of students, faculty and staff
gather to create a memorable last semester for the
black graduating class.
Black Celeb's planning committee not only
decides on the keynote speaker, student speakers and
the recipient of the Cornerstone Award - which is
given to a faculty member that has had significant
impact on the black student community - but it also
plans social events, such as bowling nights and ski
trips that offer the entire black community an oppor-
tunity to relish the last few months with their fellow
This year, the keynote speaker will be Univer-
sity alum Kenya Ayers - a psychologist, educator,
entrepreneur and author who will address the positive
results that arise from the difficulties of being a black
student at the University.
"The graduating seniors wanted to encompass the
experience they've had here and what they feel like
the University has been for them. It's been a difficult
journey, especially for African Americans, but some
good has come out of it. (A) juxtaposition, I think,
aptly describes the black experience at the Univer-
sity," LSA junior and Planning Committee volunteer
Cecelia Calhoun said.
"Black Celeb is a wonderful event to have, and
it's more intimate than the larger commencement
ceremony," Calhoun added. "Sometimes, in a large
university environment, graduation can be daunting
because it's very formal and enforced. Black Celeb
atmosphere is different - It's very warm, inviting
and familiar, and being able to walk across the stage
with friends is a wonderful opportunity."
Calhoun said that while she noticed the larger Uni-
versity body assumes that Black Celeb is an exclusive
event, it was actually created to provide inclusive-
"To my knowledge, I've had some people say that
it's separatist, but anyone can participate," she said.
"I want to emphasize that these graduations aren't
exclusive. I don't care where you come from, if you
identify with the black community, you're more than
welcome to participate."
La Celebracion Latina Director Sylvia Mayers said
the graduation ceremony created for the Latino com-
munity is not exclusive because Latino students can
identify with other ethnic communities while still
considering themselves Latino.
"The Latino community is a little bit different
because you get students that really identify with their
(Latino) identity, but you also have those that have
mixed feelings," Mayers said. She added, "You don't
have to be Latino to participate."
In 1999, six years after Black Celeb began, OAMI
responded to the requests of the Latino community
to have a commencement ceremony that recognized
Latin students' specific cultural contributions to the
University as well.
"Students were the people who wanted to get this
going," Mayers said. "They were graduating and
wanted something similar to Black Celeb, in par-
ticular, the same emphasis on their culture. It's just
an opportunity to highlight the Latino community or
members who feel they're a part of it. We have stu-
dents who are in Black Celeb that also come to La
Celebracion to show support or feel that they are also
a part of the Latino community."
As with Black Celeb, each year a committee is
composed of students, as well as OAMI staff and
faculty, to decide on a theme for the ceremony and
choose a keynote speaker.
"This year, the theme is 'Beyond Academia; LY
Ahora QuO?' Translated, it means 'What's the next
step in our lives?' and the focus is on civic respon-
sibility," Mayers said. "We try to (get alumni) for
keynote speakers if possible, and they often come for
free," she added. This year University alum Cecilia
Munoz will be speaking at the ceremony. uunoz is a
part of the executive staff of the National Council of
La Raza - an activist organization for Latinos.
Mayers said that similar to Black Celeb, La Cel-
ebracidn is a small and personal ceremony.
"La Celebracion highlights the efforts and support
the University has given to the community ... as well
as the students' individual achievements."
Mayers said that although the ceremony has grown
tremendously since it began, it remains an intimate
celebration for students and their families.
"Students are getting more involved, and in light of
minority retention problems, we try to have it here as
an incentive for people to want to graduate. I've had
students tell me all the time that it has helped to keep
Despite the other commencements that are sched-
uled on the same day as La Celebraci6n, Latino
students are still planning to attend it. LSA senior
Andrea Coronil said she is looking forward to it and
has a friend returning from a study-abroad program
"I think it's an important event because as Lati-
nos, we try to create a sense of community among
the Latino students," Coronil said. "La Celebracion is
a way of sharing (our sense of community) together
and our accomplishments at the University, especial-
ly as a minority group."
If the separate ceremony were not held, Coronil
added, "I think it wouldn't be as much of a sense of
closure in terms of college and in terms of being a
'part of thetatinocommunity. It's acelebration of my
Student celebrate during the Class of 2004 graduation ceremonies held at Michigan Stadlun
on Saturday, May 1, 2004.
Ronnie Sanslow, a staff member of the Les-
bian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Affairs
Office, started the Lavender Graduation in
1995 to provide a commencement for students
who identify with the LGBT community. Lav-
ender graduations are now performed at uni-
versities across the country, even though the
tradition began in Ann Arbor.
The Lavendar graduation was started because
"there were cultural heritage celebrations but noth-
ing for LGBT students so that they could leave the
University with a positive last experience. They
too (could feel valued) for their contributions to the
University," Lavender Graduation Director Jennifer
Almquist said the Lavendar Graduation is
different from other ceremonies because sex-
ual orientation and gender identity are factors
that are not readily visible. She said the cer-
emony is an opportunity for students who are
not involved in the LGBT community but who
are out in their personal lives to celebrate their
identities in a public setting.
The ceremony itself is similar to other com-
mencements, except that students write an
introduction that will be read as they walk
across the stage and receive their Lavender
Degree - which represents their connection
to the community.
"'This. year, we have re-instituted an award
for leadership," Almquist said. "So part of the
ceremony is going to be honoring leaders in
the community, outstanding group of the year
and outstanding ally of the year. M AYdve also"
planned a guest speaker, the Program on Inter
group Relation's associate director, Roger Fishe,
who is a tremendous ally to the community."
Graduating LSA senior Andrea Knittel, whd
said she has been active in the LGBT commu-
nity for the majority of her time at the Universi
ty, said she chose to participate in the Lavender
Graduation because the University commence-
ment "is big and impersonal."
"I like the idea of celebrating with my commit=
nity," Knittel said. "I don't know a lot of people;
but at Lavender Graduation, I'll know just about
everybody who walks with me. The opportunity
doesn't come along often."
Knittel said she wanted to bring a sense of
closure to her identity outside of the academi
"To be recognized as a member of the come
munity is important. I've been involved in a lot
of student organizations and in LGBT activism
and as I'm graduating, I feel like my academic
career is at a turning point and my activism is
at a turning point. So it's more of a commence-
ment from not so much academic things, but
activities that I've participated in."
But Knittel also acknowledged the value of
the larger graduation ceremony.
"The larger graduation ceremony is impor-
tant to show that while we have these differ-
ences, we still have something in common
- we're&lWwearing caps and gowns ,
The most important thing, Almquist said, i
for students to find whichever ceremony they;
need to bring finalityto their time atLh Jni-
they were unable to
find anyone when
In Daily History
Continued from page 1
He added that he has been talking to'
architects about rejuvenating areas that
are currently surrounded by warehouses
to create a downtown atmosphere.
"I'm thinking Main Street in
Royal Oak, five-fold. I want it open
until 4 am."
Hendrix also said he wants to attract
more people to the city to draw in more
revenue. "The more I can get you to
Detroit, the more I can pay for Cass Cor-
ridor." Hendrix said. But, he added, "I
want you to come Detroit because its fun,
not because you're Mother Theresa."
Hendrix's daughter and University
alum Erin emphasized her father's inter-
est in the younger generation.
"Just because my father is not 30
years old does not mean that he does
not have policies and interests in the
younger community. I think his history
speaks for itself," she said.
Another important part of his
campaign is a plan to fight crime by
re-instating the Detroit Police Depart-
ment's narcotic units and gang squad
and to give teenagers what he calls,
"Positive options." These include an
initiative to encourage businesses to
provide teenagers with employment
and to re-open the Belle Isle Zoo.
Hendrix's opponent and current
Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick is
the youngest mayor in the history of
Detroit and has faced constant attacks
during his administration for a variety
of allegations including incompetence,
cronyism, rumors of wild parties in the
Manoogian Mansion and police cover-
ups. Hendrix made reference to some of
these allegations during his speech.
But some feel that the Mayor is often
blamed for problems out of his control.
"There is a lot of grassroots dissat-
isfaction with Kwame's leadership,
mainly dealing with the budget gap.
They are $93 million dollars in the
red even though they proposed a bal-
anced budget not too long ago," said
Craig Regester, Program Coordina-
tor of the Residential College, who
currently lives in Southwest Detroit.
But, "I am sure he is going to be
blamed for all of Detroit's problems
that have existed for 20 years." He
Kilpatrick's office was called, but
he could not be reached for com-
Hendrix was invited to the event on
behalf of the, NAACP, the University
chapter of Metropolitan Organizing Strat-
egy Enabling Strategy and the Detroit
Project. McPhail will be invited to speak
next week in an event organized by the
Hendrix has worked in city gov-
ernment for over two decades. He
was the manager of Bill Clinton's
1992 election campaign in the state
of Michigan. He has served as dep-
uty mayor and chief of staff during
the tenure of Mayor Dennis Archer.
April 5, 1983 - A proposal that would
have repealed the Ann Arbor city pot law
which enforces a $5 fine for use of Mari-
juana was rejected yesterday.
The proposal was expected to face
staunch opposition, but a large student
turn-out in the 1st and 3rd wards helped
defeat the proposal.
Had the proposal passed, a backup pro-
posal passed by City Council would have
made the fine for use of marijuana $25.
An unofficial poll showed that the
proposal failed by a three-to-two mar-
gin - 13,897 voted against the proposed
repeal of the legislation, while 8,923 cast
their ballots in favor of repealing it.
The Hazing Report mentioned on page
1 of yesterday's edition of the Daily was a
compilation of evidence of hazing activ-
ity in three fraternities, and one sorority,
not just in Alpha Epsilon Phi.
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