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Ann Arbor, Michigan
Tuesaay, January 23, 2007
. Pfizer to shut A2 facility
City loses biggest
2,100 jobs to
move or disappear
177 acres near 'U'
to be vacated
By WALTER NOWINSKI
Daily Staff Reporter
In a devastating blow to the city
and region, Pfizer Inc. announced
yesterday that it would close its
massive Ann Arbor research and
development facility - eliminating
At a hastily convened press con-
ference this afternoon in the Mich-
igan Union, Mayor John Hieftje
joined University President Mary
Sue Coleman and Gov. Jennifer
Granholm and other elected offi-
cials to address the job cuts.
University officials said the
announcement will not have a dra-
matic effecton University research.
Over the last three years, Pfizer
contributed about $12 million of
the University's roughly $800 mil-
lion research budget.
Stephen Forrest, the University's
vice president for research, said in
an interview with The Detroit Free un e i
Press that Pfizer wouldn't neces- Michiga
sarily cut off research funding sim-
ply because they were no longer in
In addition to funding research,
Pfizer supported a few fellowships s
and had several joint training pro-
grams with the University, he said.
Many students had internships
at Pfizer that may now be in jeop- GR
ardy. In an interview after the press The 177-a
See PFIZER, page 3 North Ca
PHOTO on ANucLA CtStRt/Daly
APHIC BY BRIDCFT DONNELLDiy
acre Pfizer facility located near
mpus will soon by empty.
Gov. Jennifer Granholm speaks about the closing of the Ann Arbor Pfizer facility in the Michigan Union yesterday as University President Mary Sue Coleman looks on. Gra-
nholm said the state will start a stick-with-Ann-Arbor campaign to encourage the laid-off workers to stay in the area.
Scientists struggle to
hurdles to research
By ARIKIA MILLIKAN
To create a discrete room in the
Life Sciences Building, over a dozen
benefactors contributed more than
$2.5 million to the University's
Center for Stem Cell Biology.
In theory, this privately funded
room would allow researchers to
develop new treatments and cures
using human embryonic stem cells
otherwise restricted by laws that
restrict the use of federal funding
for the research.
In practice, numerous practical,
bureaucratic and legal obstacles
from beginning their research.
"The room is fully equipped and
ready to go," said Sean Morrison,
the center's director.
But on the other side of the labo-
ratory door - protected by a lock
programmed to deny access to any-
one with a federally-funded salary
- the room's two incubators have
yet to house a single stem cell.
Since August of 2001, when
President Bush restricted the use of
federal funds to research stem cell
lines derived before his address,
researchers have struggled to
obtain lines for research. Of the 60
See LAB, page 7
THE SUN '
ar car team shows design the Michigan football team
space-age tech at The Solar Car Team displayed
its 2005 and 2001 cars at the auto
the auto show show. Both of the cars on display
won the national championship
and took third in the world com-
By PAUL BLUMER petition.
Daily StaffReporter A massive collaborative effort,
the team's car sports some of the
Michigan Solar Car Team's latest technological advances and
rpieces, on display at the work of some of the Universi-
t's auto show for the last two ty's brightest minds.
' looked less like cars than It uses the same gallium arse-
hips. nide space-grade solar cells that
of the otherworldly looking NASA uses instead of the cheaper
s cruised the highway at over silicon cells most teams use.
rh on video screens behind The Solar Car Team is made
rs. In the video, an experi- up of more than just engineers. It
driver guided the vehicle includes business majors and LSA
ontrols more like the ones students who develop marketing
ight see in Star Wars than strategies to help cover the mas-
eering wheels in your dad's sive startup costs. Project Leader
Lying down barely 2 feet Brian Ignaut is quick to point out
he pavement, the driver was that the engineers can't build the
ted by the strongest, light- car without funding.
aterials available. But the During the auto show, students
's helmet was more familiar. like Business sophomore Keyvan
e the same famous winged Mirsaeedi, the team's head of cor-
Solar Car Team members Gerald Giarmo, Keyvan Mirsaeedi, Brian Ignaut and Brooke Bailey in front of the team's exhibit at
the Detroit auto show on Friday.
porate relations, walked around
visiting booths, handing out infor-
mation packets and asking for sup-
Ignaut said students who work
on the project often get several job
offers from major engineering and
auto industry companies.
With a budget of more than
$1.8 million, the 2005 car featured
sponsorship decals from some of
the world's biggest corporations.
The logos of General Motors, Ford,
Motorola and Shell dot the car.
Continuum -the team's car cur-
rently in production - has a budget
of over $2.2 million.
The budget must withstand the
whims of both fate and bureau-
cracy. Halfway though the 2007.
car's design process, Ignaut said,
many regulations for the World
Solar Challenge in Australia were
changed. The changes were so
drastic that the entire project had
to be scrapped and the team had
See SOLAR CAR, page 7
Teach for America founder comes to the 'U'
By MARIEM QAMRUZZAMAN
There's a new civil rights move-
ment underway, said Wendy Kopp,
president and founder of Teach For
It has nothing to do with equal
voting rights, sit-ins or marches on
Instead, Kopp said she believes
the most pressing civil rights issue
is closing the achievement gap in
education between children of dif-
Kopp, who will speak today in the
Michigan League at 4 p.m. about
said 13 million
children grow x
up in poverty
in America and
only about half .
of those chil- WENDY KOPP
dren receive a
high school diploma. Those that
graduate perform, on average, at
the eighth grade level.
Since 1999, the University has
been the largest provider of new
Teach For America Corps mem-
bers. Last year, more than 250
University graduates applied to the
organization and 48 were accept-
"I think that University of
Michigan students are particularly
aware of the social issues affecting
our country," said Jonathan Glei-
cher, a University alum and Teach
For America's recruitment director
in Michigan. "They know that edu-
cational inequity is our country's
most pressing social issue, and they
want tobe part of the solution."
Kopp started Teach For Amer-
ica in 1990 in hopes of closing the
achievement gap. The non-profit
organization places recent college
graduates in low-income commu-
nities in places like New Orleans,
Baltimore and New York City,
where they teach in public K-12
schools for two years. A major or
background in education is not
necessary, Kopp said.
"There are some kids who are
growing up facing all the chal-
lenges of poverty, who are often
going to schools that do not meet
their needs in facing a level play-
ing field," Kopp said. "Kids of color
in low-income communities can
excel and do excel when given the
University students have been
making their own improvements
within urban classrooms.
When Cheryl Bratt, first-year
law student at the University Law
School and University alum, began
teaching eighth grade English in
New Orleans, students were only
at a fourth grade reading level.
"My goal was to get my kids to
learn Shakespeare at the end of the
year," she said.
To help them, she asked her stu-
dents to rewrite Romeo And Juliet
into their own words.
"We held auditions," she said.
"They tried out for the new form
that they had written. To see my
kids on stage where they had inter-
nalized Shakespeare was the high-
light of my experience."
See TEACHING, page 3
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