thursday april 11, 2008 blacksburg, va.
Settlement accepted by April 16 families
PROFESSOR CLEARED IN HITAND-RUN History professor Peter Wallenstein was cleared yesterday of accusations that he hit a bicyclist on the Virginia Tech campus and then ﬂed the scene. The accusations were dropped because there was not enough Wallenstein evidence for a criminal charge, according to a Roanoke news station. The cyclist, a Tech freshman, said he was in a crosswalk when he was hit by a PT Cruiser in February.
SGA RESULTS ANNOUNCED The SGA election results are in. Emily Mashack won the position of president with 2,232 votes, beating out her opponent, Jennifer Vaziralli, by 87 votes. However, the three other candidates on Mashack’s ticket, “yourSGA,” were not elected. Split tickets have not occurred “in recent history,” according to current SGA President Adeel Kahn. Rianka Urbina won the position of vice president, Kendall LaRue won the position of treasurer and Meredyth Kenney won the position of Secretary; all three were running from the opposing ticket, “The Total Package.” Kenney had previously told the Collegiate Times that she would give up her position if she won and the rest of her ticket did not. However, after seeing the results, she said she had no comment at press time. The election turnout was record breaking as 4,778 undergraduate students voted on April 2 and April 3. The results were delayed until Thursday night after controversy arose over the absence of a writein option on the election ballot. While this issue remains under review, Kahn said, “I am conﬁdent that these elections will hold valid.”
weather SCATTERED T-STORMS high 74, low 56
corrections “Retired U.S. Marshal speaks about war on drugs,” (CT, April 9) contained an error. Chief Deputy U.S. Marshal Matthew Fogg is inactive, not retired. The Collegiate Times regrets this error.
coming up TUESDAY’S CT Find out everything you need to know for April 16 anniversary events in Tuesday’s CT.
T. Rees Shapiro is blogging live from the Masters tournament — check out our Web site.
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Sports....................6 Classifieds..............9 Sudoku..................9
An independent, student-run newspaper serving the Virginia Tech community since 1903 105th year • issue 48
ct associated news editor
Forbes magazine voted Blacksburg as one of the top six technical launching pads in the country and the 10th best small metro overall.
Blacksburg is 10th best small metro KAREN KIRK
ct staﬀ writer In a recent article published by Forbes magazine, Blacksburg was voted the number 10 best small metro to start a business or career. At the same time, CNN Money published an article of its own, voting Blacksburg number 43 out of the 100 best places to live and as one of the top six technical launching pads in the country. Forbes rated its top picks based on whether there was a local college present and the rating status of the college, the cost to do business, the cost of living and the crime rate. Also taken into account was the amount of culture and leisurely activities, including museums, theaters, sports teams and others. Its criteria also judged education attainment, income growth rates, job growth rates and net migration rates. CNN Money did less number crunching
research, educational, and technology transfer missions of Virginia Tech.” Today, there are twenty-four buildings on 120 acres of land that make up the CRC, a total of 750,000 square feet. All of the top 10 small metro cities chosen by Forbes in its article are also college towns. For small retailers, Blacksburg has become an ideal spot to open a new business. With new stores and shopping centers going up on Main Street, such as 310 Rosemont, Xanadu, the Kent Square shopping center, Moe’s and many others, the downton dynamics are changing. “There is tremendous opportunity for retailers to create a dynamic, thriving retail base that does not compete with big box stores,” Kemsey said. “With the cost of doing business low and educated work force high because of the university,
when making its top picks and based its choice of Blacksburg as one of the top six technological launching pad largely on the university-run Corporate Research Center, a high-tech research park that not only maintains over 100 of its own offices, but also helps to sustain local businesses. The article also spoke about how the beauty of the area encourages Tech graduates to remain in town after graduation. When voting Blacksburg into its top 100 places to live in the country, according to the article that CNN Money ran on the subject, its again credited the CRC, as well as “the natural beauty of the New River Valley and the intensity of the Tech community, with its strong school spirit and raucous football weekends.” According to the CRC Web site, the mission of the organization is, “to develop a growing, prestigious research park for high-technology companies. Concurrently, the CRC will, in collaboration with the university, advance the
see BLACKSBURG, page two
Pylon ceremony will honor fallen alumni LIZA ROESCH
ct staﬀ writer A ceremony will be held this afternoon at War Memorial Pylons to honor Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets alumni who have recently died. Each time a member of the corps loses his life during military service, his name is engraved on the Ut Prosim Pylon. The ceremony, which will begin at 4 p.m., will dedicate the engraving of two new names on the pylon. The first is that of Navy Lt. Nick Brantley. Brantley died when his helicopter went down over the Atlantic in September 2005. His will be the third name from the Tech Corps of Cadets class of 2001 to be added to the memorial. Col. Rock Roszak, director of VTCC alumni relations, organized the ceremony and worked closely with Brantley during his senior year at Tech. “He had a great sense of humor and a really wonderful character,” Roszak said. “He knew how to do what was right and held himself to very high standards.” The other name engraved will be Army staff Sgt. Jesse Clowers. He was killed in action during an IED attack in Afghanistan in August 2007. Clowers, a former Tech cheerleader, was married and had two children, including a young daughter he never got to meet. His will be the seventh name to be added to the memorial in the current situation in the Middle East. The Ut Prosim Pylon is one of the eight sculptured limestone pylons on Memorial Court. The other pylons represent Tech values of brotherhood, honor, leadership, sacrifice, service, loyalty and duty.
Eleven million dollars. This is the value of the settlement reached between most families of victims from April 16 and the Commonwealth of Virginia, designed to compensate for the lost lives and medical costs that occurred from the shootings. Peter Grenier and Douglas Fierberg, lawyers representing 21 families in the case, said in a press release that they were pleased with the settlement outcome. Although they did not want to disclose details while finalizations were currently being made, Edward Jazlowiecki, a lawyer for the family of slain student Henry Lee, said the original proposal had not changed. The agreement had been offered as a means of avoiding lawsuits for gross negligence, which at least 20 families had warned of filing by the April 16 deadline date. Gov. Tim Kaine acknowledged in a press release that a “substantial majority of the victims and victims’ families” had accepted the state’s offer. However, Jazlowiecki said the rest of the families and those severely injured in the shootings who don’t agree with the newly reached settlement are still free to file notice of suit by next Wednesday. “The point is, nobody’s really satisfied with the agreement; the only thing is some people don’t have the intestinal fortitude to go through another two or three years of this, and I don’t blame them,” Jazlowiecki said. “I have great admiration for families that aren’t going to buckle under and take the lousy settlement, and they’re going to sue the state.” He expressed his great dissatisfaction with the settlement offer, saying each of the 32 families who lost someone should receive a figure around $2 to 3 million rather than $100,000 each. “The state doesn’t do anything to benefit anything but the state, they don’t care about their population, they could care less,” Jazlowiecki said. “This is another thing they’re trying to buy off as cheaply as possible, and it’s business as usual; I mean the whole Virginia Tech massacre will bear the mark of Kaine forever.” For many months, Tech has worked closely with the state to seek an agreement and will be included with the state if the lawsuits are filed. “President Steger has said before that he believes that a mutually agreeable settlement is in the best interests of the university and the commonwealth and the individuals who have been most severely affected by it,” said university spokesman Larry Hincker.
ON THE WEB Check out a summary of the settlement at www.collegiatetimes.com
RYAN ARNAUDIN/SPPS FILE PHOTO
Two fallen corps of cadets alumni will be honored tomorrow during a dedication ceremony at the pylons, where the names of Tech’s 427 cadets lost in battle are engraved. The memorial was originally dedicated in 1960 to honor Tech alumni who lost their lives in World War II. Soon after, names were added from World War I and all military conflicts since. The names added today will bring the total to 427. “All of us in the corps are humbled by their service,” Roszak said. “The university motto is Ut Prosim. And they certainly demonstrated that to a level above and beyond.” The ceremony today will include a speech by President Charles Steger and will end with an unveiling of the newly engraved pylon by the
families of the deceased. Jared Antolin, current freshman in the corps, said this tradition is important because it shows that Tech students have done their part and given the ultimate sacrifice for their country. “Out of respect for them, it’s a good thing,” Antolin said. Antolin, who plans to pursue a career in the Navy, said it’s a reminder to people who are in the corps, but also those who aren’t. “It’s important to honor the people that went to war so you didn’t have to,” Antolin said. The ceremony is open to the public. It is expected to last half an hour.
Roger O’Dell, father of junior biology major Derek O’Dell, who had been injured in the shootings, said he didn’t want his son to have to deal with further reminders of his experiences on April 16. “I think the bad part of it is that a lot of people who did accept it, victims, or the families of victims, just wanted it to be over with, and wanted to get it behind them,” said Roger O’Dell. “That would be one more step toward closure.” O’Dell also said that his son’s memories are very difficult to live with. “Because he has such a vivid recollection of what happened, he had such a good view of what happened, he would almost certainly be called to testify in court,” O’Dell said. “So for him, he might even have to relive it on the witness stand if it were to go to court.” He noted, however, that it probably wouldn’t get that far, as settlements would continue to be proposed to those who actually file notice of a suit. Gordon Hickey, press secretary to Gov. Kaine, said that the completion of the settlement finalization process is unknown at this time.
Lie-in in DC ‘Repairing scheduled the world’ for April 16 one scoop at a time CALEB FLEMING
ct news reporter
Virginia Tech graduate Elilta Habtu will lead a lie-in on April 16 at the Supreme Court building and Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., with the support of Protest Easy Guns; the participating group hopes to raise awareness on laws they feel make it too easy for criminals to buy guns. “We are doing the protest to bring attention to the issue that United States gun laws are too lax,” Habtu said. “It is too easy for dangerous individuals to get guns. It’s such a simple thing.” Habtu, a student injured in Norris Hall last April, has been involved with the movement for just less than a year. She recently teamed up with Abigail Spangler, the founder of ProtestEasyGuns.com, to collaborate on their cause. Together, they wish to make their voices heard in front of the Supreme Court, where Habtu
see LIE-IN, page two
ct staﬀ writer Students filled Burruss Auditorium last night as co-founder of the famous ice cream company Ben & Jerry’s Homemade, Jerry Greenfield, spoke about the ideals of business and the values of community service to Virginia Tech students and members of the Blacksburg community. The event was sponsored by Tech’s chapter of Hillel as part of its Jewish Awareness Month. The bulk of the Greenfield’s presentation focused on how the two young men built their nationally renowned company straight out of college, and how they have evolved over the years. The creators Greenfield and Cohen grew up together, meeting for the first time in junior high school. Both eventually left to attend college, though Cohen moved from school to school,
Ben and Jerry’s co-founder, Jerry Greenfield, shared his experiences last night in Burruss. dropping out because of his lack of enthusiasm for earning a degree. Greenfield had the desire to attend medical school, but was rejected from more than 20 when he tried to apply. When a nationally known distributor showed interest in Ben & Jerry’s ice cream, the Pillsbury Company, which produces Haagen-Dazs, gave
the distributor an ultimatum. Either they stopped business with Ben & Jerry’s, or Haagen-Dazs would end its business with them. “After hearing that, we said, ‘oh,’ and decided to start what we called the, ‘What’s the dough boy
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see SCOOP, page two