Archive for July, 2003

Scholar-athletes epitomize Division III sports

Friday, July 25th, 2003 | Lesley McCollough, Special to Student Life
Andrew ODell

When it comes to Division III athletics, there are two schools of thought. There are those who are skeptical about the caliber of the athletics at a D-III school. On the flipside, you have the people who know that D-III athletes play not to collect as many accolades as possible, but simply for the love of the game.

While there are numerous differences between Division I and D-III sports, the biggest difference is that D-III schools do not offer student-athletes athletic scholarships. This might lead you to conclude that Washington University attracts few talented athletes-an assumption that could not be further from the truth. According to the National Collegiate Athletic Association, the D-III philosophy is simple: to place the “highest priority on the overall quality of the educational experience” and to “seek to establish and maintain an environment in which a student-athlete’s athletic activities are conducted as an integral part of the student-athlete’s educational experience.” I can honestly say that the University’s attendance at sporting events may both be lower than at a D-I school, but the spirit and excitement are just as large.

Take my freshman year for example. March Madness 2000 was well under way and the University’s women’s basketball team found itself in the Final Four in search of the third of what would be four consecutive national championships. About a week before, campus administrators sent out a mass e-mail to all students inviting anyone who wanted to cheer on the Bears in person to sign up for an all-expenses paid trip to Danbury, Connecticut, the obscure location of the 2000 D-III Final Four. Being a die-hard sports fan, and never passing up on the chance to attend sporting events for free, I quickly jumped at the opportunity.

We were scheduled to leave Thursday evening and return three days later on Sunday afternoon. Disregarding my need to study for my chemistry exam that would follow on Monday, I and about forty students boarded the coach bus and 20 uncomfortable hours later arrived at our hotel. We attended the semi-final games that evening and watched as the Bears positioned themselves to claim yet another national title.

On Saturday evening, with a 79-33 win in the championship game over Southern Maine, the Bears posted what few NCAA teams in any division have done: back-to-back undefeated national championship seasons. This, of course, was followed by a party back at the hotel for the entire University entourage. Unfortunately, in order for the traveling fans to get back to St. Louis by Sunday evening, we all had to excuse ourselves around 1 a.m. to board the coach bus for yet another 20 hour return trip. While some might consider this act an extreme gesture of school spirit, this experience is by far one of my fondest college memories. I couldn’t tell you what I got on my chemistry exam that Monday, but I will always remember cheering on my fellow classmates and friends in Danbury, Connecticut that March weekend.

D-I might have the size and media attention, but there is something to be said for sports at any level. We might not have the following of a Notre Dame vs. University of Southern Cal matchup, but on the Hilltop we do have an “intense rivalry” with our across-the-street foes of Fontbonne University.

The biggest advantage to going to a D-III school is the ability to befriend these athletes that go out and compete on behalf of all of us. They are not celebrities focusing on where they will go in the professional draft; they, too, are students first and foremost. Over the course of your freshmen year, I encourage you to get to know the football player in your chemistry lecture or the swimmer in your writing and argumentation class; then go out and show your school spirit and support your friends and fellow classmates. Take it from experience: you won’t regret it.

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An insider’s guide to the St. Louis sports scene

Friday, July 25th, 2003 | Matt Goldberg, Sr. Sports Editor

Dejection? Annoyance? Aggressiveness? All are major symptoms of the ticket disorder, a disease that affects millions of couch potatoes nationwide. Some claim sporting events are just too expensive. Some claim the view is better at home. And some claim it is just impossible to get tickets. These are all cop-outs.

It doesn’t have to be this way. You don’t have to be just another sorry loser sitting at home while your favorite team drives for victory. Trust me; you can get tickets.

Buying tickets to sporting events is simple, although I’ll admit the procurement of those little pieces of paper is not as easy as it used to be. The catch is understanding when to buy them, where to buy them, and what kind to buy.

Get those fingers warmed up

No longer does the studious sports fan need to stand in line or try to dial through endless busy signals. Over the last couple of years, the sporting industry has computerized most ticketing systems, making them easier to use and diversifying the options teams have for selling tickets.

Most Major League Baseball teams like the Cardinals have brought their ticketing operations in house-so they can pocket the infamous shipping and handling charges-which has resulted in horrible server problems. Other teams like the Rams and Blues have stuck with ticketing leader Ticketmaster, which has its own ticketing issues.

Despite some security and server problems, the best way to buy tickets is over the Internet. Sure, servers may lock you out of sales, and too many times Web sites tell the would- be ticket buyer that “we cannot process your order at this time, try again later.” Yet, it is still the wisest road to avoid the couch potato state. In my experience, I’ve only missed getting tickets twice-both on Ticketmaster.Not that I hold a grudge against Ticketmaster, but they have some problems the sports fan needs to understand. Ticketmaster will only ship to the billing address no matter what address is indicated on the order. Also, Ticketmaster only allows five minutes between the time it brings up your seats and the time it puts them back in the pool. So enter your information quickly, and if you plan to buy tickets on multiple occasions, set up an account to save you time and tickets.

Knowledge, readiness and execution

So how do you know when and where tickets go on sale? Well, the sports fan needs to stay very well informed (especially in sports-crazed St. Louis). The best way to find out when tickets go on sale is to surf team Web sites, which nearly always provide detailed information on when and where the tickets will go on sale. A word of warning to all of you partying fools out there: most teams start ticket sales early in the morning (the Cardinals put tickets on sale at 8:00 a.m.).

Once you know the time and location of the ticket sale, you need to do additional research into which games you want to attend and where to sit. If you want to buy tickets for St. Louis sporting events you need to act early because the Cardinals, Rams, and Blues sell very well. But you don’t have to spend an arm and a leg to buy your way out of a vegetative state.

The cheapest tickets will be for baseball games, and unless you plan to see a very select group of teams (e.g. the Mariners, Giants or Red Sox), baseball tickets are readily available. In St. Louis, the best deal for Cardinals seats is the bleachers, which run $14.00 a pop and afford a Redbird fan a great view at the right price. The Rams and Blues are a little more expensive and a lot harder to get because they play fewer games and have many season ticket holders. Yet, you can still get to a Blues or Rams game for about $40.00 during the regular season.

Postseason pressure

The Cardinals and the Blues made the playoffs last year, so playoff tickets can be a major concern. As one would expect, playoff tickets are more expensive but not entirely out of reach. They run about $50.00 a pop for the Rams and Blues and they range between $20.00 and $100.00 for the Cardinals (depending on the round and the seat type). Typically Cardinals playoff tickets go on sale the Monday after they clinch a playoff berth. Playoff tickets are also hard to get unless you log on right at the time the tickets go on sale.

So what happens if you are shut out but still want to go to the game? Well, you can still go for the right price. Sites like E-bay and both have tickets for every event, but they are out of most people’s price range (they were asking $250.00 for 2002 Rams playoff tickets).

Since I’ve been in St. Louis I have gone to every Cardinal playoff game (some 5 games), a Rams playoff game, and Blues games-all acquired over the Internet. Now admittedly I am a sports fanatic, and I budget my money accordingly, but anyone can score tickets. All you have to do is research when the tickets go on sale and then log on, click and buy. So get off your couches and go buy some Cardinals tickets; they are already on sale!

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An insider’s guide to the St. Louis sports scene

Friday, July 25th, 2003 | Jeff Novack
Andrew ODell

St. Louis: home of the Gateway Arch, Forest Park and of course one of the sporting world’s most hallowed shrines-the Bowling Hall of Fame. Yes, I know what you’re thinking, just where is the Bowling Hall of Fame and can I make plans to visit it? I can’t honestly say I know exactly where it is, but I think we will all sleep better at night just knowing that it’s there.

But there is a reason why St. Louis was named 2000’s Best Sports City by The Sporting News, and it’s probably not the Bowling Hall of Fame. It probably does have a lot to do with St. Louis’ teams, fans, and players. St. Louis has long been the home of a slew of sports icons-from Bob Pettit of the old St. Louis Hawks (NBA) to Al Macinnis of the Blues, to grocery boy turned quarterback Kurt Warner, and of course the Cardinals’ Mark McGwire.

When I was in my junior year of high school, I came to visit Washington University and decided to attend a Cardinals game. I expected big things from the larger-than-life McGwire and the slugging first baseman did not disappoint. On the first pitch he saw that day, he blasted a mammoth home run.

Mark McGwire has since retired, with Albert Pujols filling his shoes in the lineup card. Of course, McGwire left an indelible mark on the city’s sportscape that will not easily be replaced; I think they even named a highway after him.

But thanks to a supportive fan base, St. Louis will always have new sports heroes like the aforementioned Warner, who went from stocking shelves as a grocery clerk to Super Bowl MVP. In truth, Warner’s star has faded as of late, as he is coming off a disappointing, injury-plagued campaign. There is even speculation that Warner’s backup, Marc Bulger, will supplant him as the team’s number one quarterback this season. And sure Bulger throws nice, crisp passes and handles pressure in the pocket well, but how well does he know his way around the produce section? Even if Warner never regains his magic tough, it is undeniable that his rags-to-riches story stirred our imagination.

St. Louisans are quick to embrace their sports stars. Even the average St. Louisan supports the St. Louis teams and even the city’s casual sports fan seems to know most of the players on a St. Louis team. And when you go to games, everyone wears the team’s jerseys.

St. Louis athletes and sports teams seem to make an effort to be a part of the community. The Cardinals give out free tickets to high school honor roll students. And on one occasion, I was lucky enough to see the St. Louis Blues president speak at the business school. He, too, dispensed free tickets to anyone wearing Blues apparel. Is it a rule in hockey that all those involved in player personnel and management must have long hair-preferably of the mullet variety?

But that’s splitting loose ends. All jokes aside, St. Louis has been a pretty cool sports town in my experience-even without an NBA team. Games are big events in the St. Louis community and at school. Some students from outside St. Louis choose to stay true to their home team, some root for the St. Louis teams, and many students from areas without pro franchises choose to adopt the St. Louis teams as their own. In any case, there is healthy population of sports fans at the University.

St. Louis should continue to offer great sports action this next season with the Rams, Blues and Cardinals all expected to be in championship contention. If it’s NBA action you crave, you can always make a road trip to Chicago or Memphis. Even if you’re not a fan of the St. Louis teams, go see a game when your team comes to town. All of the St. Louis sporting venues are easily accessible by MetroLink, and it’s easy to get tickets on your hands, especially with many school subsidized trips offered. And if live sporting events are too wild for you, there’s always the Bowling Hall of Fame.

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IM Sports: Perfect for just about everyone

Friday, July 25th, 2003 | Matt Goldberg, Sr. Sports Editor
Andrew ODell

I am a horrible athlete. I am too skinny to play football and too short to play basketball. I have no hops and no arm. Yet, I love sports. I live and die with every pitch, every touchdown pass, and every hoop. While it is nice to watch Sammy pound home runs, and Shaq slam down dunks, I get antsy. I want to pretend for a second that I can be an athlete. Luckily, Washington University has many intramural sports competitions.

What are IM sports?
The intramural sports department offers some 20 sports (see chart) and plus 13 special events. You can compete in the men’s, women’s, or co-ed divisions of most sports. Further, most sports within each division have multiple levels of competition (usually an A and a B level).
There is a large difference between the A leagues and the B leagues (the B leagues are for beginners). However, many times A league teams play in B leagues to win.

What are the most popular sports?
IM ultimate Frisbee is extraordinarily popular-it seems to be a University tradition. Whether you can throw a disc or not sign up for a team. The practices are a ton of fun and it is a great chance to bond with your friends.
Basketball, flag football and softball are other favorites.

Why participate in IM sports?
While IM sports are not as intense as game seven of the World Series or the Super Bowl, they are competitive and fun. They are a way to bond with your freshman floor-mates. They are a way to let off some excess steam from that tough chem midterm. They are a way to get involved.

What do you win if you win a league?
A cool t-shirt-and that is it. But trust me; the t-shirt is worth it!

How are IM sports officiated?
Just like any other athletic contest, they have referees. Referees go through a training program so that they know the basics of the game they are watching. Yet, ultimately it is up to the teams to police themselves.

How do you sign up?
When the school year starts a list of sports and deadlines for signing up are posted. All you have to do is go to the IM office (on the second floor of the Athletic Complex), pick up a form, get a bunch of signatures, and turn it back in. It is that simple! But act fast because leagues and sports are known to fill up fast. (You also have to put down a deposit that you forfeit if you fail to show up for a game.)

When are the games?
It all depends! Most games are on the weekends, but games take place all week long. Just sign up for dates and times that jive with your schedule.

What if you are shut out of a league and still want to play a given sport?
Chances are that there will be pick up games in the Swamp or around campus. If you miss out on Frisbee, basketball or football there are ample opportunities to join informal games on the 40. For the more exotic sports like water polo and arena flag football, you’ll just have to wait until next year.
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The inside scoop on “WUmors”: don’t be the last to know!

Friday, July 25th, 2003 | Emily Tobias, Photo Editor
Andrew ODell

When we say that word travels fast on the Washington University campus, we are not kidding-fast, in fact, is probably an understatement. So, even freshmen, with only limited experience on campus, probably have heard a few rumors (or “WUmors”) about the University. Ever heard the one about why there are no sorority houses on campus? We thought so. . . . With that in mind, we aim to set the record straight once and for all.

Question: Why are there no sorority houses on campus?

Answer: Ask most University students why there are no sorority houses on campus, and they will probably respond by saying that a state law prohibits many girls from living together in one house, because such a situation constitutes a brothel.

While that is the conventional wisdom, it is entirely untrue.

“It’s an urban legend,” said Karin Horstman Johnes, the director of Greek Life.

She went on to explain that when Small Group Housing was in its planning stages, the Women’s Panhellenic Council was even approached about the possibility of creating sorority houses.

“The women had been surveyed, and they had said that there was no interest in pursuing houses,” said Horstman Johnes.

The main reason that the women were opposed to the idea of sorority houses was the fact that they enjoy the freedom to live with women in other sororities and with those who choose not to join any sorority.

“Not having sorority houses on campus is one thing that I love about being in a sorority here. It allows people to have friends within their sorority, but also make outside friendships with people in other sororities and people not involved in Greek Life,” said Meredith Cohen, vice president of the Women’s Panhellenic Council.

Horstman Johnes added that the sorority members “liked that they did not have any obligations of filling a house, having the financial constraints of a house, and that they liked living with members of other sororities as well as with someone who might not be in a sorority.”

Question: Is St. Louis the country’s most dangerous city?

Answer: According to a recently released study by Lawrence, Kan.-based Morgan Quitno Press, St. Louis is the nation’s most dangerous city. Morgan Quitno Press based the rankings on publicly available FBI crime data for all cities of at least 75,000 residents.

The study focuses on six crime categories: murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary and motor vehicle theft.

Each category is weighted so as not to skew the numbers based on the particular city’s size.

Overall, University Police Chief Don Strom was fairly skeptical of the study.

“My experience has been that when you see ratings like this you really have to look at them with a jaundice eye, because you don’t know all the factors,” said Strom.

“It just really is very difficult to compare numbers like this and get a good handle as to what they mean,” said Strom.

An Associated Press article mentioned that University of Missouri-St. Louis criminologist Scott Decker called the rankings “misleading, arguing they fail to point out the city’s 60 percent drop and the steady decline of overall crime here over the past decade.”

In addition, Strom noted that, “I think in reality what it comes down to is how safe do people feel overall.”

“[If there are] some neighborhoods in any city that have a higher crime rate than other parts of the city, that doesn’t mean that the entire city is not a safe place to be,” he said.

Question: Are the new dorms supposed to be temporary?

Answer: One residential WUmor that has recently been circulating amid the student body claims that William Greenleaf Eliot and Brookings Residential Colleges were only built to last ten years, and because of that, it is being said that they are to be torn down fairly soon.

“WGE, Brookings and all the new Residential Colleges on the South 40 are intended to be with us for much longer than 10 years,” said Dean Justin Carroll.

Carroll cited other construction plans as a reason for confusion.

“Perhaps someone is confusing our intention to replace nearly all the remaining older facilities on the South 40 over the next several years (could be 10 years, could be shorter or longer). It is highly unlikely that the University would replace one of our newer facilities before all the older halls are replaced or renovated,” said Carroll.

Yet another question that Carroll dispelled with is the rumor that, in time, the South 40 is going to become graduate housing. This story also says that undergraduate housing would move to a school-owned plot of 16 acres near the MetroLink Station.

“I have been at Washington University for over 22 years and we have never, in that time, housed graduate students on campus,” said Carroll.

He doubted that graduate students would want to live in the traditional residence hall setup that is on the South 40 and said that, to his knowledge, there are no current construction plans for the 16 acres near the MetroLink station.

Question: Was nuclear waste ever buried on the South 40?

Answer: The area now known as the South 40 once served as the burial ground for isotope microparticle catching material. This material, however, does not constitute nuclear waste.

During the 1940s, the Federal Government utilized the University’s cyclotron to create approximately 500 micrograms of plutonium in conjunction with the Manhattan Project. The Government then assumed responsibility for disposing of all remnant materials.

The University then used the cyclotron to create short half-life isotopes.

“[The half-life isotopes] were used primarily at the medical school for patient care and treatment,” said Fred Volkmann, the vice chancellor for public affairs.

The isotopes themselves had half-lives ranging from a few minutes to a few days, so there was little effective risk in their creation and handling. Researchers still made efforts to minimize any risks by covering the floor of the room with newspaper to catch any microparticle byproducts of isotope creation. These newspapers were later buried in an unused forest, now known as the South 40.

Special care was taken to document where the newspapers were buried.

When the University made plans to build residence halls on the South 40, that documentation was consulted. Prior to construction, the buried materials were removed and the soil was tested for radioactive levels. Nothing out of the ordinary was found, so the first round of construction began in 1958. In 1960, soil tests were conducted again prior to additional construction. Again, no traces of radioactive residue were found.

Question: Why do ID cards have two magnetic strips, even though we only use one?

Answer: There are two strips on the back of Washington University identification cards. However, one of them serves no purpose. The history of the second strip dates back to the previous generation of green ID cards that the University used. Unlike the current cards, the old generation used “low-coercivity” with the strips.

“Low-coercivity has to do with the strength of the magnetism on the card, and the low, which is the old technology, was easily prone to being erased,” said Wil Fritz, associate director of information systems.

Eventually, the old green cards were reordered with one high-coercivity strip and one low-coercivity strip, in order to make the eventual transition to high-coercivity.

Fritz said the high-coercivity strips “are very robust, and it is hard to wipe them out.”

So when the time came to order the ID cards that are used today, Fritz remembered how convenient it was having the second strip on the old cards to use for transition purposes.

“Having the two stripes came in very handy for changing technologies,” he said.

Even though there is no use for the second stripe on the current cards used, they are there to enable another change in technology. Also, if the school has another use for the second strip, it can be easily programmed into the cards, without having to reorder cards and completely revamp the technology again.

Question: Will St. Louis Bread Co. create an establishment on the Hilltop Campus?

Answer: Though the University did once consider adding a St. Louis Bread Co. to the dining options on campus, it is not doing so at this time.

“It’s not true,” said Steve Hoffner, assistant vice chancellor for students and campus director of operations. “We had preliminary discussions with what was then known as Saint Louis Bread Co., before it was taken over by Panera. They weren’t interested in being on campus because we couldn’t guarantee them a minimum sales amount.”

These discussions took place approximately four or five years ago.

According to Hoffner, bringing in other third party food providers is possible, but the final decision is in the hands of the provider.

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A look back: 2002-2003 academic year in review

Friday, July 25th, 2003 | Molly Antos
Andrew ODell

The 2002-2003 academic year was one of improvement in many areas for Washington University. The overall undergraduate program rose from the 14th to the 12th-highest ranking in the U.S. News and World Report, which also ranked 19 University graduate programs among the top 10 in their respective categories. Highlights of these rankings include the School of Medicine’s rise to become the second-best medical school focused on research, the Olin Graduate School of Business’s rise to 29 from its previous position of 31, and the School of Art’s new position of 21. WU also improved in its food rankings, offering the best food of any college in the country, according to The Princeton Review.

* In response to student complaints that there was not enough security for off-campus housing, the WU Police Department began patrolling surrounding neighborhoods of University-owned property. The other goal of this new program was to help improve the relationship between students and other members of the neighborhoods.

* Freshmen last year were given the option of taking new “themed” English composition courses to fit their interests. The different options included Technology and Society, Journey and Quest, Language and Identities and the traditional English composition class, Writing and Critical Thinking.

* With the assistance of 18 University student interns and Chancellor Mark Wrighton, alumnus and balloonist Steve Fossett brought the Bud Light Spirit of Freedom capsule to its final destination at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington D.C.. The capsule was used in Fossett’s circumnavigation of the globe last summer, which took him four days, 19 hours and 50 minutes.

* The one year anniversary of September 11 was marked by a candle-light vigil in the Brookings Quadrangle to remember the victims and their families. Almost 1,000 people sat in silence as a variety of students and faculty shared their thoughts, reactions and experiences about the tragic event.

* Controversial author of “Step Across This Line” Salman Rushdie spoke on campus on Oct. 3 and 4. Rushdie was invited back this year after his visit last year was cancelled due to security concerns. Rushdie went into hiding after the publication of his work “The Satanic Verses,” because Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini placed a death threat, or fatwa, on Rushdie. His appearance on campus marked one of the occasional public appearances Rushdie now makes.

* Religious group Jews for Jesus ignited debate on campus concerning religious boundaries in the fall. Sponsored by InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, members of Jews for Jesus made an effort to spread their beliefs in order to convert “traditional Jews,” or members of the Jewish community who do not believe that Jesus was the Messiah, into believers of Jesus.

* WUTV came out with a new show called “Wake Up Wash U.” This is a daily morning news program that provides students with both campus and national news as well as entertaining segments.

* University College started giving employees free tuition, compliments of a new University benefit package which also includes 50 percent remission for graduate courses. The result was a 32 percent increase in University College enrollment from 2,028 students the previous year to 2,681 students last year. The number of university employees enrolled increased by over 500.

* The School of Law’s Student Bar Association (SBA) denied funding to the Law Students Pro-Life (LSPL), but upon LSPL’s appeal, SBA reversed the decision and funding was granted. Prior to the reversal, this had been the first time in University history that the SBA, the law school’s student government, had denied any group of students the right to become an acknowledged organization on campus.

* Senior Arianna Haut represented WU on Jeopardy! as part of the college tournament. On her first appearance on the show, Haut came in first, winning $17,200. She lost in the semi-finals, however, but she still won $5,000 for advancing that far.

* Dr. Larry Shapiro was named as Dr. William Peck’s successor as dean of the School of Medicine. Shapiro, along with two of his three children, is an alumnus of the University. Shapiro is also an alumnus of the School of Medicine. Peck will remain with the university as a professor and researcher.

* Undergraduate tuition increased by 5.2 percent, from $26,900 last year to $28,300 for the 2003-2004 school year. This hike was in response to new construction costs and rising faculty salaries. Currently, 60 percent of WU undergraduates are receiving some form of financial assistance; this number should increase in the coming year due to the tuition increase.

* After an electric pole caught on fire at the corner of Wydown and Big Bend, the South 40 went without power for approximately 12 hours. The results of this event included flooding in Eliot dormitory due to frozen pipes.

* The University announced its support of affirmative action in its admissions policies by signing an amicus curiae (friend of the court) brief submitted to the United States Supreme Court. Washington University joined 37 other universities in this endeavor.

* University students and staff watched on television as hundreds of law enforcement officials searched the “debris belt” of the exploded Columbia shuttle for remnants and bodies. The campus mourned after the shuttle broke up over Texas only 16 minutes before it was scheduled to land in Florida.

* President George W. Bush delivered a speech that shocked parts of the campus and the nation, in which he gave Saddam Hussein and his sons 48 hours to leave Iraq. When these demands were not met, the U.S. invaded Iraq on March 20, 2003. This event was met with protest from segments of the University community; a protest of the war was held the next day in the Brookings Quadrangle.

* After three years of meetings, planning, engineering and financial decisions, groundbreaking for the new MetroLink line finally took place. The groundbreaking was marked by a ceremony in the University’s West Campus parking lot. Although Forest Park Parkway will be closed for more than a year, the new line, expected to open in March 2006, promises many benefits. The new route will run underneath Millbrook Boulevard via a tunnel, and will surface at the intersection of Hoyt Drive and Throop Drive to pick up passengers.

* Former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright addressed the class of 2003 at the annual Commencement exercises Friday, May 16. Albright also received an honorary doctor of humanities degree.

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Phase III dorm welcomes freshmen

Friday, July 25th, 2003 | Erin Harkless, Opinion Editor
Andrew ODell

Come the beginning of this academic year, students will have a new housing option on the South 40. Construction of Phase III, the new dormitory next to Wohl Center, is currently on schedule as workers keep up a steady pace with the project.

According to Jim Severine, assistant director of building services, a substantial portion of the construction was completed by July 15. The dorm will then undergo a final cleaning and furniture will be moved into the building starting July 21, so that it can be ready for students in late August.

“It’s gone extremely well and according to plan,” said Severine. “We’ve been on schedule and the dorm will be finished and ready for the fall.”

This Phase III construction marks the first wave of building projects on the South 40. Construction on another new dorm is set to begin early this fall in the spot where Eliot Hall once stood. Eliot was leveled June 21 to make way for a new freshman dorm of the same name, which will be paired with Nemerov Hall in a residential college setting. Construction on this new dorm will last about a year.

Phase III, which has yet to be officially named, will be a mixed housing building for both freshmen and upperclassmen with capacity for 172 students. Severine said that the exterior of the new building was designed in a style similar to that of the buildings in The Village rather than that of the other buildings on the South 40.

“The building has a more academic, distinguished look,” said Severine. “We think it will complement the other buildings well.”

Future construction plans include tearing down Liggett and Koenig Halls and replacing them with two new buildings in a residential college formation similar to that of Lien and Gregg residence halls in the Robert S. Brookings Residential College. The buildings will probably come down one at a time, and the construction on the first building should begin after the new Eliot Hall is finished in the fall of 2004.

Severine said that all of these plans are tentative and subject to change, depending on how the construction progresses over the next year. Other long-term plans include possibly rebuilding other low-rise freshman dorms such as Rubelmann, Umrath, Lee and Beaumont Halls. He noted that student feedback regarding the construction has been mostly positive, with many students being pleased at the square footage the rooms will have in the new buildings.

Some students, however, expressed concern over the plans, with particular worries related to the current sense of community that stands to be compromised with the proposed construction.

“I have come to grips with the decision to tear Eliot down,” said sophomore Rob Collins. “Still, I’m disappointed in the decision and believe the destruction of Eliot will create a void on the South 40.”

The quality of the new structures is another concern.

“I’m sure the new buildings will look nice,” said sophomore Ashley Evans. “I’m concerned they’ll be poorly made, with thin walls like I’ve found in some of the other newer dorms.”

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Friedman to address class of ’04

Friday, July 25th, 2003 | Cory Schneider, Sr. News Editor

Thomas Friedman, a columnist for The New York Times and a Pulitzer Prize winner, will speak at Washington University’s 143rd Commencement in May 2004. In addition, he will also give the first talk the upcoming year’s Assembly Series, on Sept. 17.

“Thomas Friedman is a respected and thoughtful public intellectual who has done much to increase our understanding and knowledge of the world and its condition,” said Chancellor Mark Wrighton in a statement.

Friedman’s Assembly Series lecture will appear under the banner of the College of Arts & Sciences’ “Conversations” series. These discussions are meant to be an opportunity for students to talk about issues relevant to their worlds. His lecture will not take place in Graham Chapel, which hosts most Assembly Series lectures, but at the Athletic Complex Field House.

“In such times as these, I can’t think of a better person to kick off our Sesquicentennial year celebration, for even as we pause to celebrate, we must continue to seek knowledge and insight into the world us,” said Wrighton.

On May 14, 2004, Friedman will also give the Commencement address to the graduating seniors. At the ceremony, which will take place in the Brookings Quadrangle, he will receive an honorary doctorate of humanities.

“I think he is a great person to come speak at Commencement,” said senior Angela Howard. “Especially because he is so knowledgeable about current events and will be able to give a more realistic perspective to seniors, because they are issues they will have to face in the real world-socially, personally and politically.”

Vice Chancellor of Public Affairs Fred Volkmann explained that the early announcement last April of Friedman’s appearances was made in order to inform students about the events of the upcoming school year.

“They wanted the students to know about this prior to leaving at the end of the school year,” said Volkmann. “They felt that it was important for all of the students coming back in the fall that there would be this kick off event for the week of Sept. 14-20.”

Volkmann said that Friedman’s double appearance will be in line with plans for the University’s 150th anniversary.

“The reason I am sure he was picked is because he is a nationally respected voice on certain issues that are part of the conversations that will take place in sesquicentennial year,” said Volkmann. “He is a logical person to serve as a keynote speaker in the fall. He will open the discussions and this will be a way to bring closure at the end of the year.”

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Construction shuts down Parkway

Friday, July 25th, 2003 | Molly Antos
Andrew ODell

In order to make room for a new MetroLink line closer to the Washington University campus, Forest Park Parkway has been under construction for the past few months and will continue to be so for at least the next year.

The Parkway is a major road used to get to the University and around the area, and its closure is already leading to detours and reroutings. One concern is the inconvenience that freshmen, upperclassmen and their families will experience in August due to the road’s current status.

Steve Hoffner, vice chancellor for students, is optimistic about orientation, however.

“There shouldn’t be any interruptions from the Metrolink for freshmen moving into the South 40,” he said.

One reason is that students can use Snow Way in lieu of Forest Park Parkway.

Kathy Farrol, a communications representative for the Metro, which operates Metrolink, said that she was confident that freshmen would have few problems when it comes time to move in.

“We’ve worked closely with the University to maintain as much access as we can,” she said. “I think with a little preplanning, and a good job keeping in communication with the freshmen, I think we should all get through this with a minimum of hassle.”

In order to get around main campus, a temporary one-way road on the south side of Forest Park Parkway between Skinker and Big Bend is open.

At the outset of construction, a ceremony was held in April at the University’s West Campus parking lot to celebrate the groundbreaking of the Forest Park-to-Shrewsbury Metrolink line. This initiated a string of short-term nuisances for those accustomed to using the road during their everyday driving routine. The construction of the new line means a partial to full shutdown of Forest Park Parkway until the summer of 2005. The end result, though, promises the benefits of convenient transportation.

Hoffner pointed out that the potential advantages of the new Metrolink line should outweigh the costs.

“For the next couple of years there will be a lot of disturbances and construction on campus,” said Hoffner. “But in the long run, the Metrolink expansion will be of great benefit to the university community. It will open up the region to students in terms of exposing them to more of what St. Louis has to offer. It will also provide students with new volunteer and internship opportunities, and provide low-cost transportation between our campuses.”

The line is expected to open in March 2006.

“It’s a little early in the project, but we’re on schedule,” said Farrol. “We’re still hiring contractors, but for a project that is due to finish in 2006, we are right on schedule.”

Opponents of the new line claim that it will not serve people dependent on the transit. They also say that the agency running Metro, the Bi-State Development Agency, should not have borrowed $419 million to pay for the line. The reasoning behind this is that this loan will lead to money problems and, consequently, further cuts in bus service.

Others, such as the “Concerned Citizens Coalition,” are angered by the low representation of minority subcontractors. They cite that five percent of the work has been given to African-American subcontractors, while 10 to 15% has been given to female-owned firms. These individuals have been petitioning both MetroLink and the local government for the past year and hope to halt the building of the line until changes are made in the current hiring practices.

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Changes in the works for campus food

Friday, July 25th, 2003 | Laura Vilines, Features Editor
Andrew ODell

Exams, homework and long lines at the Subway in Mallinckrodt are considered by some students to be among the most frustrating aspects of life at Washington University. Bon Appetit and food services are hoping to eliminate at least one of these problems, along with a variety of others, when they initiate several changes to food services for this coming academic year.

Some of the more significant changes are the renovation of Bear’s Den and the move of Subway from the Mallinckrodt food court to the Rat (next door to Mallinckrodt in Umrath Hall), both of which are taking place this summer.

Assistant Vice Chancellor of Students and Director of Operations Steve Hoffner explained the Subway move.

“In Mallinckrodt, one of the problems, particularly in the noon hours, is crowding and perceived slow service,” said Hoffner. “We will be moving Subway out of the food court and into the space where The Rat is currently. Based on our sales information, the Rat is dead.”

According to Hoffner, major changes are also taking place in Bear’s Den. The space is currently being renovated and merged with Ike’s Place.

“There will be a new environment with new furnishings and new lighting,” said Hoffner. “We will be rearranging things to lessen the crowding we have noticed. Seating will be a combination of tables with chairs and booths and we will be adding Internet access and keeping the television.”

In addition to these aesthetic changes, menu changes will also occur, including the addition of a brick oven for pizza. The grill will also be expanded, and the salad bar and pasta station will remain.

Hoffner said that many of these changes are a result of direct communication with Student Union, faculty, staff and members of the student body.

“A lot of these ideas come out of reports we have done early in the semester and focus groups,” said Hoffner. “The reports give a direction on how we are doing and what we should be doing differently. We have discussed these [changes] with the food committee chairs, members of SU and the SU president.”

Pamela Bookbinder is chair of the food committee for Student Union.

“When it comes to the food on campus, I really think that it is the small things that count,” said Bookbinder. “Among the changes initiated by the food committee are the extended hours of the pasta bar at Bear’s Den and the inclusion of paninis on the menu at Ursa’s.”

According to Bookbinder, in addition to these changes, the SU food committee is currently working with a resolution that will allow freshmen to purchase the basic meal plan and will encourage the visible pricing of items in Bear Mart.

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