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Ann Arbor, Michigan
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
LIGHTS, CAMERA, CAMPUS
LECTURER ACCUSED OF FRAUD
Citing health, lecturer stopped
teaching just before TV report
questioning his ethics aired
By JENNA SKOLLER
and ESHWAR THIRUNAVUKKARASU
Daily Staff Reporters
Just days before a local television news report
suggested he might be "Michigan's Worst Lawyer,"
political science lecturer Lawrence Greene withdrew
from teaching his courses for the
remainder of the semester.
The Monday WXYZ news seg-
ment reported that Greene cashed
his deceased parents' pension
checks and featured interviews
with nine former clients of Greene's
who alleged that he collected thou-
sands of dollars from them and
failed to do the work for which he GREENE
Students in Greene's "Constitutional Politics,
Courts, Politics and Society" course received an e-mail
Thursday informing them that Greene would no longer
be teaching the course.
Joann Nemeth, academic program assistant in the
Political Science department sent the e-mail, which
read, "It is with much regret that I inform you that for
circumstances beyond his control, Larry Greene will
no longer be teaching PS 389.003 Fall'08 term."
The courses have continued as scheduled with a
rotation of three professors taking over for Greene,
who has taught at the University since 2002.
"Please be assured that the course will still be
taught," the e-mail said, "and the department will con-
tinue to strive to provide you with the highest level of
teaching service and classroom experience."
Greene, who practiced law in Michigan and several
other states for almost 40 years prior to his career as
a lecturer, officially left his classes Friday, a few days
before the Detroit Action news video report aired.
See LECTURER, Page 3A
Brianne Davis (Jarhead), starring as "Nas" in "Virgin on Bourbon Street," is filmed stepping out of a caron Washington Street in front of Rackham Auditorium yesterday. Some scenes from the
film, which also stars Rob Schneider (Deuce Eigalow: Male Gigolo), have already been shot in Detroit,
THE M ICH IGAN ELEGAT1N
Dinigell to fight for committee chair
atop House Energy and
Commerce at stake
By KYLE SWANSON
Daily Staff Reporter
For decades, Congressman John Din-
gell (D-Dearborn) has used his high
ranking on the House Committee on
Energy and Commerce to oversee legis-
lation key to the state of Michigan and
the auto industry.
Now, with Michigan's economy tank-
ing and the auto industry in shambles,
another member of Congress seeks to
replace Dingell atop the committee.
Today, Congressman Henry Wax-
man of California,
the Energy and
tee, will challenge
the 82-year-old Din-
gell, who's served
in Congress for 54
years and chairs the
Nadeam Elsha- DINGELL
mi, a spokesman
for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, said
the matter would be considered by the
Democratic Steering Committee this
morning and would go before the Dem-
ocratic Caucus on Thursday. The caucus
will have the final vote whether Dingell
retains his chairmanship.
Richard Hall, a professor at the Ford
School of Public Policy and co-author of
"The Committee Assignment Process
and the Conditional Nature of Commit-
tee Bias," a book about Congressional
committees, said he expects Dingell to
hold the chairmanship.
"I'll be really surprised if Waxman
is able to shove Dingell aside," he said.
"Even if he loses in the Steering Com-
mittee, it doesn't mean he will lose in
But Hall said that if Dingell loses his
chairmanship, the implications for the
state could be far-reaching.
"The Energy and Commerce Com-
mittee has a huge jurisdiction, includ-
ing just about anything that moves or
makes noise, anything that's bought
or sold, the air you breathe and much
more," he said. "Summing across all of
those issues, Dingell's representation of
Michigan's interests must be huge."
Aside from Detroit's struggling auto-
motive field, which is seeking a $25 bil-
lion bailout from Congress, Michigan
has an unemployment rate of 8.7 per-
cent, the nation's second-highest.
Waxman announced his intention to
See DINGELL, Page 7A
MICHIGAN STUDENT ASSEMBLY .
. MSA elections kick off,
low turnout expected
OFF THE PEDESTAL
vying for 30 seats
By MATT AARONSON
A Michigan Student Assembly
official said he anticipates a low
turnout in this week's election,
which began at midnight last
Only 5.3 percent of eligible vot-
ers turned out for MSA's fall elec-
tion last year, while 6.4 percent
voted last winter.
Election Director Ryan
Bouchard said turnout numbers
in the election, which decides who
will serve as assembly representa-
tives, will "probably consistent
with the last few years, which has
been below 10 percent."
Voting for this year's election
will be open. until Thursday at
Bouchard said he initially
intended to try to increase voter
turnout by working with Informa-
tion Technology Central Services
to advertise the elections on Uni-
versity computer backgrounds or
linking the voting site on the main
page of CTools.
"Unfortunately, that's some-
thing that can't be planned a few
weeks ahead of time," he said,
adding that the assembly did not
hire him or choose election dates
early enough to implement his
Bouchard said he's optimis-
tic about implementing changes
for the next election in March,
though. Chief among the respon-
sibilities for the next election
director, Bouchard said, is setting
a date for the next election.
For this race, though, represen-
tatives vying for seats will have to
stick to the same low-tech strat-
egy - handing out flyers on the
Diag and putting up signs around
MSA President Sabrina Shin-
gwani, an LSA senior, said higher
voter turnout would lead to a more
"There's so much potential for
See ELECTIONS, Page 7A
Munson sets himself
apart by interacting
By ELAINE LAFAY
When Engineering senior Cour-
tenay Holscher met David Mun-
son on Halloween last year, he was
dressed as a pickle jar.
The costume itself wasn't a shock
-after all,it was Halloween.It'sjust
the fact that Munson, the man in the
Vlasic Dill Pickle suit is the dean of
the College of Engineering.
And last month, when Munson
dressed as a wolverine he contin-
ued a Halloween tradition he began
two years ago when he took over as
dean of the college. Itwas an effort to
prove tothe rest of campus that engi-
neers can enjoy themselves, he said.
Munson, who took office in
July of 2006, has taken a different
approach to a dean's relationship
with students. Between three and
four times a term, he holds office
hours for students to come and voice
complaints, sing praises of profes-
sors or simply chat.
Engineering senior Steven Hech-
tman, president of the University's
Solar Car Team, said Munson makes
it easy for students to approach him
withideas by making himself acces-
"He doesn't sit up on his own
pedestal, and that really sets him
apart," he said. "It's definitely a
good thing for students to be able
to approach their dean like that and
not feel intimidated and really feel
that their opinion is valued."
As dean, Munson has tried to
shift the culture of the school away
from intense specializations toward
a broader, more well-rounded cur-
One of the biggest changes Mun-
son has implemented since taking
the reins has been placing a stron-
ger emphasis on study abroad pro-
Historically, because of the spe-
cific nature and limited availabil-
ity of Engineering courses, fewer
See DEAN, Page 7A
College of Engineering Dean David Munson is different than most of his cot-
leagues. For starters, he dressed as a dill pickle for Halloween a year ago. Aside
from that, he's embraced a more approachable style than his predecessors.
WEATHER HlI 36
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