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November 30, 2012 - Image 4

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4 - Friday, November 30, 2012

The Michigan Daily michigandaily.com

4 - Friday, November 30, 2012 The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom

Edited and managed by students at
the University of Michigan since 1890.
420 Maynard St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Unsigned editorials reflect the official position of the Daily's editorial board.
All other signed articles and illustrations represent solely the views of their authors.
Picking the provost
Successor should follow Hanlon's example
he University received a shake-up today when Dartmouth
College announced that University Provost Philip Hanlon
was elected to serve as the school's 18th president. The
University is expected to choose an interim provost until the next
University president is chosen. The next president will then likely
choose a permanent provost. It should be expected that the inter-
im provost will maintain the high standards set by Hanlon - such
as putting an emphasis on undergraduate affairs and working to
decrease tuition rates - and look to guide the University through
changing and difficult times in the world of higher education.

Big (Star)bucks

Admit it, you enjoy nest-
ling up at Starbucks just as
much as I do. To escape the
everyday head-
aches of college,
you curl up in a
soft chair with ;
your favorite
book and holi-
day latte - away
from the anx-
iety-burdened SARAH
Hatcher Ref- SKALUBA
erence Room,
those creeping
paper deadlines
and the freezing Antarctic winds
that torment our campus each win-
ter. Although we really don't have
four dollars to throw down every
time we want a sugary, caffein-
ated espresso drink, we continue
to pay up. Our economy may be in
turmoil and the price of our tuition
an ever-increasing battle, but some-
how, some way, we still manage to
indulge ourselves with Starbucks,
Sweetwaters, Comet Coffee, you
name it.
Earlier this month, Starbucks
introduced their exclusive new Costa
Rica Finca Palmilera roast, an exclu-
sive blend of Geisha beans that sells
for a mere $7 a pop. That's right folks,
a grande cup of joe that costs $7 and
your dignity can now be found at
your neighborhood Starbucks!
But seriously, how in the world
could a single cup of coffee be
almost 10 dollars when you can buy
an entire meal for that price right
down the street at Potbelly or Noo-
dles and Company?
As an avid coffee drinker myself,
I must admit the whole thing is
absurd. Do I treat myself to a vanilla

latte every now and then? Yes. But
to expect customers to drop seven
bucks on a cup of coffee before head-
ing to class or work seems crazy. For
all I know, this could be a new trend
in coffee culture of offering a more
luxurious, exclusive roast that truly
separates the men from the boys
and the coffee connoisseurs from
the sleep-deprived college students
needing only a basic brew before
crawling to 8 a.m. lecture.
Our society today is quite liter-
ally fueled by coffee. The familiar
slogan, "American runs on Dunkin',"
proves accurate, considering more
than half of Americans over the age
of 18 drink coffee daily and not just
one, but an average of three cups
a day, according to the National
Coffee Association. So remember,
just when you thought your coffee
addiction was reaching an all-time
high this semester, chances are the
majority of the population is right
there beside you.
However, just because we rely
so heavily on caffeine to power
through the day doesn't mean we
need to throw down a casual seven
dollars every time we want a quick
caffeine fix. As late night host
Jimmy Kimmel said on his show
this week, "I feel like this is a test
to find out just how stupid we are."
Unfortunately, I'd have to concur. A
cup of joe is a cup of joe regardless
of where you buy it. Granted, that
sketchy diner down the road may
keep the same pot festering for days
on end, but when it comes down to
your average, everyday cup I don't
see a drastic difference between
the Folgers you brewed at home
and the house roast you picked up
at Amer's.

Americans foster a spending
culture. That's definitely nothing
new - just look at what transpired
on Black Friday at stores across
the nation. But at a certain point,
we, as consumers need to take a
step back and think a little more
deeply about how we're spending
our money. The average American
spends roughly $1,100 a year on
coffee, and mind you, this num-
ber doesn't include gingerbread
lattes, caramel macchiatos and
all the other guilty pleasures we
indulge in over. the holiday sea-
son. Increase the price of coffee to
seven dollars a cup, however, and
this number would skyrocket.
the coffee
elitists from
basic brewers.
Trust me, I'd be the first to jump
in line for a great brew, but not at
-such a price. Instead, let's try to
embrace the holiday spirit, shall we?
Let's replace venti lattes and luxury
cups of coffee with an average cup
of joe. Not only would your savings
account thank you, but in return,
you'd have changeleft over to donate
to that freezing Salvation Army bell-
ringer hovering outside Meijer in his
Santa suit.
-Sarah Skaluba can be reached
at sskaluba@umich.edu. Follow
her on Twitter at @sskaluba.

Hanlon received a Bachelor of Arts degree
from Dartmouth in 1977. He will assume the
position as president of Dartmouth College on
July 1, 2013 and succeed Jim Yong Kim, who
left to become president of the World Bank
some months ago. In a campus-wide e-mail,
University President Mary Sue Coleman wrote
that she will name an interim provost in the
"upcoming weeks."
The creation of an interim position is the
best option for this time because the position of
president is also in flux as University President
Mary Sue Coleman's contract expires in 2014.
Due to the close working relationship between
the president and the provost, it would be best
if the new incoming president were given the
option of choosing the associate he or she will
be working with. vice Provost Martha Pol-
lack would be ideal for this transitory period
as a result of her close work with Hanlon. As
the head of academic budget for the University,
the provost exercises significant influence over
aspects of student life, of which tuition cost is
the most critical example.

Hanlon exemplified the best character-
istics of a provost. He was dedicated to the
undergraduate population, a characteristic
that is often undervalued at large research
universities. Hanlon has even taught under-
graduate level Calculus I classes and he and
Pollack also taught a class about the Univer-
sity's budget process this fall, which demon-
strated an important and consistent link to
students. Hanlon always put undergradu-
ates at the forefront of his administrative
agenda. He is also credited with minimiz-
ing the damage of a $47.5-million drop in
state funding in 2011. When the University's
Board of Regents voted for tuition increases
for the 2012-2013 academic year, Hanlon
said "financial aid was the highest priority
in this budget." Consequently, he pushed for
administrative aid for University students to
have a true undergraduate experience with-
out high tuition costs. The University needs
an interim, and then a permanent provost,
who continues Hanlon's example by focus-
ing on undergraduate education.

Re- evaluate evaluations

Kaan Avdan, Sharik Bashir, Barry Belmont, Eli Cahan, Nirbhay Jain,
Jesse Klein, Melanie Kruvelis, Patrick Maillet, Jasmine McNenny,
Harsha Nahata, Timothy Rabb, Adrienne Roberts, Vanessa Rychlinski,
Sarah Skaluba, Michael Spaeth, Gus Turner, Derek Wolfe
EU's debt crisis and you

With the national media focusing attention
on the United States' fiscal cliff, the European
debt crisis has dropped off our radar. While
the U.S. economy slowly recovers under
the leadership of President Barack Obama,
Europe remains in chaos. The European cri-
sis was in large part triggered by the enor-
mity of the Greek government's debt. That,
combined with the fact that Italy, Portugal
and Spain have failed to manage their own
debts, has crippled the European Union and
the euro.
As time -has passed, however, Americans
have failed to realize the significance of the
Eurozone's sovereign debt crisis in light of our
own situation.
It's time for the United States to act more
quickly and for Americans to pay closer atten-
tion, since the American economic recovery
may falter if the European debt crisis isn't
reined in.
One obstacle to managing the crisis is
European countries varied their responses.
According to the Atlantic Council, the origins
of the crisis can be traced to the "political
failure to establish credible governance for
economic and monetary policy" and the fact
that EU leaders have been more concerned
about the politics of certain issues within
their respective countries. This has led to
rigid reforms like austerity measures and
bailouts for Greece and Spain, which have
created mechanisms that will not resolve the
EU's problems.
Both these reforms will only provide tem-
porary relief, if any at all. Austerity will only
hurt social programs and increase unemploy-
ment. Countries such as Greece and Spain
will still find it difficult to pay off their debts
in the long run with the limited resources at
their disposal.
The Eurozone's economic prospects have
already been diminished by its inability to sta-
bilize the economies of its southern countries.
If the current situation continues, lenders
will be less likely to provide loans to Euro-
pean governments. As a result, a reduction of
consumer confidence and spending in Europe
will lead to further contractions in European
economies. The downward spiral of decline
in economic activity will reduce demand for

American products, pulling the U.S. economy
back toward recession.
If this crisis isn't mitigated, a weaker
Europe will mean a weaker trade partner for
the United States. According to Reuters,13 per-
cent of all U.S. exports go to EU members. If
the European crisis continues in the coming
months, trade between the EU and the United
States will decrease. This will lead to economic
contractions and higher unemployment in the
"world's biggest economic blocs," which "could
be a drag on global economic fortunes for years
to come," according to Rachel Epsteina, a pro-
fessor at the University of Denver.
So howshould Europe and the United States
react? In the coming years, they must come
up with innovative, permanent solutions as
opposed to temporary ones. Austerity mea-
sures alone won't solve anything, as cutting
vital social programs without raising any new
revenues could create further economic prob-
lems for many fragile European economies.
Like the United States, the Eurozone must use
a balanced fiscal approach to solve their prob-
lems, which will mean raising taxes and cut-
ting spending. European countries should look
at revising their tax codes as well as reforming
their banking institutions.
Obviously, it will be difficult for the United
States to influence European policymaking,
since European nations are so focused on their
internal problems. One way to tackle this prob-
lem is to fix the American banking system to
make it more difficult for banks to engage in.
risky business behavior. Once we've resolved
our own financial woes, the United States will
be able to provide guidance to Europe that
Europeans will deem credible.
It has been four years since the beginning
of the U.S. financial crisis. These years have-
been long and tough for many Americans
and Europeans. Western political leaders
must implement solutions to solve this crisis.
Clearly, much more needs to be done to resolve
Europe's debt crisis. Americans who ignore
the European debt problem do so at their own
peril. With that in mind, American media
should focus on the importance of the crisis in
the coming months.
Paul Sherman is an LSA sophomore.

At 2:16 a.m. on Thursday
morning, asI was just start-
ing a major assignment due
the same day, I
got a mysteri-
ous e-mail. It
opened like this:
"You've been
hearing from
your teachers
all term. Now
your teachers YONAH
want to hear LIEBERMAN
My eyes lit
up. My heart
skipped a beat. Some things that
immediately ran through my head:
"My teachers wantto hear from me?"
and "What an incredible opportuni-
ty!" and "Wow, I feel special."
Then I promptlymarked the email
as "Unread" and went back to work.
As students, we talk about our
classes a lot. Sometimes it's to praise
an inspiring teacher. Usually it's not.
Instead, it's to complain about
a boring lecture or an unwanted
assignment. If, god forbid, I was a sta-
tistics major, I might choose to ana-
lyze the correlation of the amount of
time spent complaining about a class
and the proximity of the due date for
the next major assignment.
But once a semester, we get our
chance to take our complaints
straight to the source. Once a
semester, we get a direct line to our
professors. And the best part? It's
totally and completely anonymous.
That's right, I'm talking about
end-of-semester course evaluations.
For a moment, let's forget about
the people who fill out course eval-
uations to say positive things about
their classes. Those students may
exist. But because they're a minor-
ity on this campus, I won't bother
writing about them since they
clearly don't matter. ,
There is, of course, the issue

of whether or not professors and
departments actually consider
our critiques. There are certain
required classes for concentra-
tions that seem to be universally
despised year-in and year-out. On
that note I simply have to say that
I trust professors. As students, we
have no other recourse.
The other side of the coin is get-
ting students to actually fill out the
evaluations. If I hadto guess, I would
say about 20 percent of campus regu-
larly fills out course evaluations and
another 15 to 20 percent of students
do themwhenparticularlymotivated
- either by complete admiration or
utter hatred. The question is: Why
doesn't most of campus take the time
to evaluate classes?
There are two reasons.
First and foremost, the timing
of the evaluations couldn't be any
worse. They open two weeks before
the first day of finals and close the
day after ourlast day of classes. For
students, that's the busiest time of
the year. We have exams to prepare
for, final projects to present, and
semester-long research papers due.
Seriously - could there be a more
poorly chosen stretch of time?
Every year, I get no less than six
e-mails from CTools reminding me
fill out the evaluations. Six! That's
more reminders than I get to "pay
the damn utilities bill, already!"
And every year I see the e-mails,
mentally remind myself to do it
later, and mark them "Unread." I
don't skip it because I don't want
to fill out the evaluation. I skip it
because I probably have a paper due
the next day or a massive project to
finish up before next week.
A second reason for the low par-
ticipation is that students have no
incentive to complete the course
evaluations. We all have opinions
to share about each of our classes
- but are we motivated enough to

actually log in to CTools and fill
out the form? The answer is almost
always no, partly because of the
horrible timing and partly because
we don't get any direct benefits
from participating - at the very
least, we get the satisfaction that
future students will-benefit.
want to hear
from you and *
your peers.
I propose a change in a system
that's clearly not working. First,
instead of closing the evaluations
before finals begin, keep them open
until two days after the last day of
finals. This way, people can actually
get back to them once theyhave time.
Second, to encourage participa-
tion, students should only be able
to see their grades for the course
after they have filled out the evalu-
ation. Don't force everyone to com-
plete the detailed form - make the
required section a simple 10 ques-
tions on a one-to-five scale. Keep
the rest of the form intact so people
can choose to fill it out if they'd
like. It will take maybe two minutes
per course and create the personal
investment needed.
I'm not claiming to have all the
answers - these are just sugges-
tions. But it's a conversation we
need to be having. Our University
is one of the best in the world. It's
about time that our course evalua-
tion system reflects that excellence.
-Yonah Lieberman can be reached
at yonahl@umich.edu. Follow him
on Twitter at @Yonah Lieberman.


Animal rights article
presented both sides
"In vivo: How do students in
biomedical research adjust to
animal experimentation?" in the
Nov. 28 print issue of The State-
ment on how students adjust to the
use of animals in their biomedi-
cal research covers a topic that is
rarely addressed, and I feel that
Jacob Axelrad did a solid job while
also presenting both sides of the
animal-use issue. Most advances in

human and animal health involve
animal-based research, and as
director of the Unit for Laboratory
Animal Medicine, I want to empha-
size that it's of utmost impor-
tance that the animals are treated
humanely - for the sake of the ani-
mals as well as to ensure the best
research outcomes.
In that context, I want to clari-
fy all animals at the University of
Michigan are observed seven days
per week and 365 days per year.
Also, animal-use protocols are
approved not by ULAM, but by the
University Committee on Use and
Care of Animals, an independent
body that reviews and oversees

the entire animal care and use pro-
gram at the University. It includes
University scientists and non-
scientists, veterinarians, research
compliance specialists and individ-
uals representing the community 0
at large who aren't affiliated with
the University.
Again, please accept my kudos
for an interesting article which
took a unique perspective on the
issue of animal research and edu-
cation at the University of Michi- 4
Robert C. Dysko
Professor and Director
Unit forLaboratory Animal Medicine

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