Ann Arbor, Michigan
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
MICHIGAN STUDENT ASSEMBLY
to shift for
At meeting, MSA
urges addition of box
to application for
By DANIEL STRAUSS
Daily Staff Reporter
At last night's Michigan Student
Assembly meeting, University Pro-
vost Teresa Sullivan announced
that each student's tuition will be
spent more evenly across different
academic fields starting this fall.
Currently, 75 percent of each
student's tuition goes to the depart-
ment in which the student chooses
to major. In the fall, that number
will drop to 50 percent. The remain-
fund his or her elective classes.
Sullivan said administrators
hope the change encourages stu-
dents to take more classes outside
their majors and improves the qual-
ity of schools besides the College of
Literature, Science, and the Arts.
"One of the things I think this will
do is to encourage deans in schools
like arts andsciences and music,the-
atre and dance to offer more classes
for non-majors," she said.
After Sullivan's presentation at
the meeting, the assembly's last of
the semester, the body passed two
The first resolution calls for a
new check box to appear on the
University's admissions applica-
tion for prospective students who
identify as North African or Middle
The check box resolution was
pushed by Project: Check, a group
comprised of current and former
students and led by recent Univer-
sity graduate Sirene Abou-Chakra,
which aims to better represent
certain groups within the Univer-
sity's ethnic breakdown statistics.
The region includes nations from
Morocco to Iran.
Middle Eastern and North Afri-
can students are currently grouped
with white students in the admis-
sionsprocess. The resolution passed
LSA junior Muhammad Algha-
nem, an MSA representative and a
member of Project: Check, said the
new option acknowledges that stu-
dents from the Middle Eastern or
North African region are not white.
The assembly also passed a
resolution to give varsity athletes
priority registration to register for
Some assembly members said
they felt this move would put too
much emphasis on athletics at the
University, instead of academics.
The resolution passed 23-3 with
three people abstaining.
MSA President Sabrina Shin-
gwani said she supported the reso-
lution. She said the credit blocks,
register based on how many credits
they have, have been tightened in
the past, giving fewer students ear-
See MSA, Page 7A
University President Mary Sue Coleman addresses students at her fireside chat at the Michigan Union yesterday. Ina question-and-answer format, several of the about
50 students in attendance asked Coleman questions about recent hot topics like renewable energy and the University's possession of Native American remains.
A CHAT WITt GCOLEM iAN
'UT' president fields questions on environment, GEO walkout during "fireside chat"
By JENNA SKOLLER
University President Mary Sue
Coleman fielded questions yes-
terday about renewable energy
and last month's graduate stu-
dent instructor strike at a meeting
with about 50 University students
billed as a "fireside chat."
Though the mostly question-
and-answer formatted event
raised controversial issues, it
maintained a light atmosphere
with the group' bursting into
laughter several times in response
to Coleman's quips.
E. Royster Harper, vice presi-
dent for student affairs, was also
on hand for the chat, which was
held in the Michigan Union's Kue-
Though the talk shifted from
topic to topic, questions and con-
cerns about the environment and
sustainability were at the fore-
front of the chat, as the state Sen-
ate recently passed bills calling for
Michigan's government buildings
to obtain 10 percent of their elec-
tricity from renewable sources by
2010. Gov. Jennifer Granholm has
also recently been proposing that
renewable sources must account
for 10 percent of all of the state's
electricity by 2015.
"It's going to become evermore
important inthe future," Coleman
said. "Not only from the perspec-
tive of saving money, but we also
must do what we can for the envi-
Addressing another recent
issue, a student asked about
whether the University planned to
return Native American remains
and artifacts that one Michigan
tribe says belonged to its ances-
tors. Echoing the University's
stance from the past few weeks,
Coleman maintained that giving
back the remains without being
certain of their origin would vio-
late federal law.
"It would be illegal to turn
See COLEMAN, Page 3A
East U. construction peeves students
COLLEGE-AGE POLICY WONKS
Think tank lets college
kids try hand at politics
Residents ask for
reduced rent because
of Zaragon Place
By JAKE HOLMES
LSA senior Stew Krane said
noises and vibrations from the
construction site next door have
turned the place where he sleeps
into a "coin-operated motel bed.".
That, he said, makes sleeping a
One of many disgruntled stu-
dents in his neighborhood, Krane
said his house shakes and rattles
because of the jackhammers used
for nearby construction. He said
the sounds from the construction
are so loud that hearing his TV is
a tall task.
Krane lives on Willard Street
between East University Avenue
and Church Street, directly behind
the construction site of Zaragon
Place, a 10-story apartment com-
plex that will replace the recently
demolished Anberay Apartments.
The project has peeved some stu-
dents and businesses who claim
the disruptions have been too
Tim Stout, an assistant super-
intendent at the site, said con-
struction crews only work
between 7 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. from
Monday to Friday and sometimes
an occasional Saturday. He said
the cews work Saturdays if they
appear to be drifting away from
their target completion date of
looks for solutions to
By ELIZABETH LAI
Though you might not see
them protesting on the Diag or
holding sit-ins, students at the
University's chapter of the Roos-
evelt tostitution are still working
to make their voices heard.
The Roosevelt Institution,.
which calls itself "the nation's
first student think tank," is a non-
profit, nonpartisan organization
founded by Stanford University
students in 2004. The University
of Michigan's chapter, one of 98
nationwide, launched in fall 2005.
University members of the stu-
dent-led organization meet week-
ly in one of nine policy centers
- small groups that craft policy
on issues like the economy, health
care and urban planning. Each
summer, representatives from the
institute's chapters meet to decide
on three "Roosevelt Challenges"
for the coming school year. This
year's challenges include pro-
moting responsible community
development, improving civic
participation and the criminal
Members of the Universi-
. ty's chapter share, debate and
research different policy propos-
als that can then be published
once a semester in the chapter's
journal, The Roosevelt Vanguard.
The Institution's national
office in Washington D.C. choos-
es the best policies to give to vari-
ous state and federal legislators
and advocacy groups in the hopes
that they might be able to push for
them to be adopted as legislature.
"Kids get more invested in
research and working hard when
they see their policies and their
ideas going into the real world,"
said LSA sophomore Kelly Good-
man, who will be co-president of
the University's chapter next year.
Goodman said she thinks stu-
dents want to be more involved
in social and political activities,
judging by the level of social
activism on campus. The Insti-
tution, Goodman said, provides
them with that opportunity.
"You kind of get the sense that
they want to do more," she said.
LSA sophomore Nathaniel Eli
Coats Styer, chair of the Universi-
ty's chapter of College Democrats,
said he welcomes the think tank's
approach to campus politics.
"We really enjoy working with
them because they do do [sic]
something creative and different
than we're used to doing as Col-
lege Democrats," Styer said.
Brady Smith, chair of the
University's chapter of College
Republicans, said he thinks the
Institution has a "noble goal" but
has been disappointed because
there has been little interaction
See THINK TANK, Page 3A
Construction workers build the Zaragon Place on 619 E. University Avenue yesterday. Construction starts every week day at 7
a.m. and lasts until 3:30 p.m., and many students say they have trouble sleeping or studying because of the sounds.
According to Ann Arbor city
code, construction work is per-
mitted between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m.,
Monday through Saturday.
Stout said O'Neal Construction
- an Ann Arbor-based company
working on numerous University
projects including the softball field
renovations - is the contractor
for Zaragon Place and has already
discussed the impact of the work
with neighboring businesses and
"I do feel pretty positive, and I
hope that's mutual," Stout said.
But Krane said the construction
has been too disruptive, saying the
noise starts "way before" he and
his housemates prefer to wake up.
He said he thinks his rent should
have been reduced due to the con-
"The house is such a great loca-
tion for campus, and then this hap-
pened," Krane said.
Stout said the company has
already made concessions to resi-
dents and businesses in the area,
citing a decision to accommodate
nearby businesses by keeping two
lanes of traffic open and con-
structing a protected walkway
next to the construction site. In
order to maintain two-way traf-
fic on the street, the city elimi-
nated parking on both sides of the
Even with the accommodation,
though, local business owners say
the project has temporarily hurt
Joey Zeer, owner of In-N-Out
Pizza, a convenience store located
next to the site, said he makes some
sales to hungry and thirsty con-
struction workers, but that on the
See CONSTRUCTION, Page 3A
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