2 - Tuesday, January 13, 2009
The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.cam 4
2 - Tuesday, January13, 2009 The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom 4
In Other Ivory Towers Camps C -r Explained
They call her'Mama Sue'
As the house mom for the Chi up, and she said she spends two dents, and she has ma
Omega sorority, Sue Volz has been a months every summer at a second about those with who
second mother to hundreds of female house she owns in Kentucky. especially close.
University students for the past eight And although she lives in the soror- '-"I think the greatE
years. ity house, Mama Sue is married, with a ment I have felt here i
Better known to the 74 members son and five grandchildren. she was very troubled
of the sorority who live in the house "A married house mom, that's I hugged her. And she
every year as "Mama Sue," Volz gov- kind of rare," she said, as if remark- and said, 'Don't you
erns the 39-bedroom house with hugs ingon an unusual bird on the sorority again!'" Mama Sue s
and a warm smile. And she seems to house's large front lawn. left (for the summer)
be absolutely adored by her residents. Her husband, BillVolz -"PapaSue" in August, she cOmE
"Oh, Mama Sue?" gushed one resi- to the girls of the house - lives at the door, flying, running
dent, stopped as she was leaving the couple's home in Ypsilanti with their And I just saw the cha
sorority house. "She's great, you'll antique Mercedes and six Studebak- in her life," Mama S
love her." ers, a vintage automobile. And though wiped the corners ofl
With a big smile, Mama Sue told retired, he still works two weeks of Mama Sue said she
of the first meeting with this year's each month doing maintenance for leaving Chi Omega s
pledge class. the sorority house. she does, she said shE
"I came out of the kitchen, and they "So I do employ my husband, too," tinue to surround he
started whispering," she said, her voice Mama Sue said with a laugh. lege students.
dropping to a stage whisper. "'That's Her grandchildren, all between "I eventually woul
Mama Sue! That's Mama Sue!"' the ages of three and 12, sometimes to Kentucky and go t
Growing up in Kentucky with 14 stay on the weekends, too - but only of Kentucky," she sa
brothers and sisters, Mama Sue is one at a time, she said. dream, to go back ho
used to a big family. Most of her sib- Mama Sue said she takes a lot of be closer to family."
lings still live near where they grew pride in being a mother to her resi- CHARLES
Before You Were Here Photos of the Week
ny stories to tell
m she has been
s I had one girl,
... and one day,
ever touch me
aid. "When we
and came back
es in the back
up to hug me.
ange that I made
ue said, as she
doesn't plan on
oon, but when
e hopes to con-
erself with col-
ild like to move
o the University
aid. "That's my
me. And I could
Sue Volz, house mother to the 74 sisters of Chi Omega
sorority, has lived at the sorority house for the past
For a video of this week's campuscharacter,
check out michigondaily.com.
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CAMPUS EVENTS & NOTES
Man hits friend, Vending machine Student group Admissions
friend calls cops damaged recruitment essay talk
WHERE: The Diag
WHEN: Sunday at about 10:40
WHAT: A person unaffiliated
with the University was hit by
his friend, University Police
reported. No one was injured.
The cause of the altercation
is under investigation. Offi-
cers were unable to locate the
WHERE: Mason Hall
WHEN: Sunday at about 11:20
WHAT: The glass on the
front of a vending machine
was broken, University Police
reported. Nothing was report-
ed missing. Police haveno
struck with ball auitrim -tar
WHAT: Winterfest, a fair of
hundreds of student organi-
zations and University offic-
es, departments and units to
recruit new student members.
WHO: Student Activities and
WHEN: Today from 4p.m. to
WHERE: Second Floor,
Arts and crafts
WHAT: Students can deco-
rate totebags using free art
supplies provided by Univer-
sity Arts and Programs.
WHO: University Arts and
WHEN: Today from 8 p.m. to
WHERE: Michigan Union
WHAT: Assistant Prof. Ann
Kirkland to speak about the
University application's diver-
sity question. The lecture
will address the politics of
the question. Kirkland is an
expert on civil rights protec-
tions for gender, race, sexual
orientation and disability.
WHO: University Unions Arts
WHEN: Tonight from 6p.m.
WHERE: UClub, Michigan
. A caption in Monday's
edition of the Daily ('M'
shoots for NCAAs?) misiden-
tified gymnsst Evan Heiter.
. Please report any error
in the Daily to corrections@
A toy helicopter was spot-
ted attempting to smuggle
drugs into a British pris-
on, the Daily Mail reported.
Guards said they saw the
remote control toy flying over
the jail's wails carrying a small
load, thought to contain drugs.
The helicopter and its load,
however, were not found.
"Meh" will be an official
word in the Collins Eng-
lish Dictionary. The com-
pany asked people to submit
ary words. Popular submis-
sions included "frenemies"
">FOR MORE, SEEOPINION, PAGE 4
To mark Barack Obama's
inauguration next Tues-
day, Zingerman's Cream-
ery has created "Baracky
Road" gelato. The Sicilian-
style gelato contains Michigan
milk and cream, butter-roast-
ed peanuts, chocolate chips,
dulce de leche from Argentina
WHERE: Intramural Sports
WHEN: Sunday at about 10:50
WHAT: A University student
was injured playing squash,
University Police reported. He
was struck in the face with a
ball. He was eacurced to Uni-
WHERE: Power Center for the
WHEN: Sinday at about 2:50
WHAT: A visitor fell down
the stairs at the auditorium,
University Police reported. The
person was taken to University
GM unveils plan to open new
Detroit factory to build batteries
WANT TO WORK FOR THE DAILY?
COME TO A MASS MEETING.
WEDNESDAY, JAN. 14, 8 P.M.
TUESDAY, JAN. 20, 8 P.M.
420 MAYNARD ST.
plant to have more
than 100 employees
DETROIT (AP) - General
Motors Corp., a wounded company
living on cash borrowed from the
government, didn't behave like one
Monday as it unveiled ambitious
plans to research and assemble
lithium-ion batteries in Michigan
and picked a Korean company to
supply the cells to power the Chev-
rolet Volt electric car.
But a top executive raised the
prospect that GM will need more
federal loans later in the year if the
U.S. auto market doesn't improve,
saying that the company present-
ed a worst-case scenario to the
government last year that would
require $18 billion in loans, $4.6
billion more than the Bush admin-
istration has granted.
The battery factory, to be
opened somewhere near Detroit,
will employ more than 100 people
and be highly automated as it takes
cutting-edge lithium-ion cells
imported from LG Chem Ltd. of
South Korea and welds them into
battery packs for the Volt and other
next-generation vehicles from GM.
GM also announced the creation
of a 31,000-square-foot battery lab,
the largest in the country run by an
automaker, atnits Warren technical
center. It also said it has joined with
the University of Michigan to test
batteries at the Ann Arbor campus
and train future engineers to design
components for electric cars.
No one would say exactly how
many jobs would be created, but
the news was welcomed by Michi-
gan officials who are trying to
bring down the state's 9.6 percent
unemploynent rate, the highest in
Tony Posawatz, GM's vehicle,
line director on the Volt, said he
expects the battery factory and lab
will bring in companies that supply
parts for futuristic electric cars,
creating another employment base
for the troubled Detroit area.
"We have enough critical mass
that future growth will cluster,"
the borderbetween Detroit and the
tiny enclave of Hamtramck will
assemble the Volt, so southeastern
Michigan is the likely front-runner
to land the battery factory as well.
Gary Cowger, GM's manufactur-
ing chief, said it's important that
the new factory be near the Volt
assembly plant because each bat-
tery pack is 6 feet long and weighs
The Volt is designed to plug into
a standard wall outlet and travel 40
miles on battery power alone. After
that, a small internal-combustion
engine kicks in to generate power
for the car. The car is set to go on
sale late next year at a price expect-
ed from $30,000 to $40,000.
Monday's announcement at the
North American International
Auto Show in Detroit wasfresh evi-
dence that GM expects to survive
the recession and thrive, even as
Chief Operating Officer Fritz Hen-
derson raised the prospect of fed-
eral loans beyond the $13.4 billion
already granted to the company.
Henderson wouldn't speculate
on what would cause GM to seek
more money, but he said the com-
pany submitted a "downside sce-
nario" in December that would
require a total of $18 billion.
"We had said at the time there
could be financingbeyond whatwas
just called for in the baseline plan,"
Henderson told reporters. "It's just
speculation to say what would be
required beyond the 13.4."
GM is forecasting a U.S. auto
market of anywhere from 10.5
million to 12 million vehicle sales
this year. The market finished last
year at 13.2 million, but the fourth-
quarter sales rate averaged around
the lower end of GM's estimates.
Henderson said GM already is
negotiating with the United Auto
Workers in an effort to meet con-
cessions required by the terms of
its loans. Those include labor cost
parity with foreign automakers
with U.S. factories, something the
UAW has said it would try to get
administration to remove.
But Henderson said GM is pro-
ceeding with the talks based on the
loan terms that it has in hand.
The battery announcement
was among the biggest news from
the Detroit show Monday, where
Toyota Motor Corp. ramped up the
competition in hybrid gas-electric
vehicles by showing off the next
generation Prius, the top-selling
hybrid inthe U.S.
The 2010 Prius gets an average
of 50 miles to the gallon, four more
than the current model, which
already is the most fuel-efficient
vehicle ranked by the Environ-
mental Protection Agency.
The third generation ofthe hybrid
has a more aerodynamic design, but
its exterior is easily recognizable as
a Prius. Toyota said pricing will be
released before the midsize sedan
goes on sale in late spring.
Honda Motor Co. on Sunday
unveiled a new version ofthe Insight
to compete directly with the Prius,
and Ford Motor Co. has a hybrid
Fusion also due out this spring.
Also Monday, California start-
up Fisker Automotive debuted a
production version of its $80,000
plug-in Fisker Karma and vowed
to sell 15,000 of the sporty luxury
hybrids annually. The company
also unveiled a slick convertible
version called the Karma S, which
it expects to build in 2011.
Volkswagen'AG said it plans to
offer hybrid and diesel versions
of four upcoming vehicles being
developed for the U.S. market,
including a future successor to the
Amid all the attention on hybrid
and fullyelectricvehicles, LGChem
CEO Peter Kim said the company
may eventually build battery cells
in Michigan; and it anticipates that
its U.S. subsidiary, Compact Power
Inc., will add to its tOO-person
work force in Troy, Mich.
Posawatz said GM chose LG
Chem because of its flat-cell design
that dissipates heat better and
stores more energy than competi-
tors' cylinder-shaped cells.
Hesaid the competition fromthe
team of Frankfurt, Germany-based
Continental Automotive Systems
and A123 Systems Inc. of Water-
town, Mass., was very capable, but
"one has tobe the lead."
LG Chem's Kim said the GM
contract boosts his company's
"We now are a global player. We
have many plants sited worldwide.
So it would be possible to produce it
in the United States in the future,"
The current LG Chem was
established in 1947 and besides
batteries, also produces petro-
chemicals. LG Chem is a member
of the LG Group, a major South
Korean industrial conglomerate
with interests in areas including
electronics, flat panels, telecom-
munications and logistics.
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