September 1, 2010
Vol. 93 • No. 14
The Rambler The voice of Texas Wesleyan University students since 1917
Politicians need to scale back on the politics.
Wesleyan sports prepare for upcoming season.
Opinion, page 2
Sports, page 5
Publication ranks TWU in top tier Jonathan Resendez
US. News & World Report recently ranked Texas Wesleyan a top tier school and No. 71 among the Western Regional Universities in its “Best Colleges” list. The list ranks more than 1,400 schools using the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The top tier ranking only applies
to the U.S. News and not the one issued by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. “When you consider the number of universities in the United States, I think [the ranking] is very positive,” Interim President Dr. Lamar Smith said. Smith also said that the rank shows the school’s progression. “When you consider where we’ve come from, that’s just more impres-
sive than ever,” he said. “I suspect there was a time in our past where we would not have a ranking at all.” The positive growth pattern is attributed to the quality of the teachers and administrators, Smith said. Senior Vice President and Provost Allen Henderson said the rank “speaks to the health and vitality” of Texas Wesleyan. “Our university is in excellent financial shape, and we’ve grown con-
siderably in the last 10 years,” Henderson said in a press release. “We’re poised to do some new and creative things in the future.” Senior psychology major Courtney Hickerson said more one-onone time with class instructors is one of the qualities Wesleyan has that sets it apart from other schools. “The teachers get to know you better, and you get to spend more time with them,” she said. “You have more
opportunity to learn from them specifically.” Polytechnic High School counselor Sodonia Johnson said prospective students sometimes consider the rankings when school shopping. A tough economy can also give the rankings more value, she said. “Usually kids interested in that [number] know that the job market may look at the school rankings more favorably,” she said.
Goodwill redoes dorm room
Rooms beginning to change per report Shauna Banks
plans to become an elementary school music teacher after graduation. Wesleyan recently expeStewart spends all her rienced its first taste of Extime at Wesleyan. In adtreme Makeover: College dition to taking 18 hours Edition. Stewart is a senior mu- this semester, she has a On Aug. 19, one dorm sic education major who part-time job at the pool firstname.lastname@example.org
resident, Selena Stewart, received a makeover of her dorm room with all furnishings supplied by Goodwill Industries of Fort Worth, Inc.
Professor’s book outlines Muslim complexity in U.S.
A Wesleyan professor published a new book in June that addresses the competing demands of American Muslims and the Islamic religious and secular laws. After two years of research and a year of writing and editing, Wesleyan Religious Studies assistant professor Dr. Mark E. Hanshaw published his book “Muslim and American? Straddling Islamic Law and U.S. Justice.” The aspects covered in his book include divorce and child custody in different Muslim and Islamic cultures in the U.S. and abroad. “Hopefully the book will help us better understand the complex fabric of the religion in this country,” Hanshaw said. “I think the Muslim community doesn’t get as much attention as other religious groups
in this country do.” Hanshaw received his doctorate in religious studies from Southern Methodist University in 2004, and he also received his jurist doctorate from the University of Tennessee in 1991. He said he has several other degrees. Though Hanshaw’s doctoral work concentrated on the Islamic tradition, he has also done a lot of research in other religious systems. Professors of religion Dr. Ron Ballard and Dr. Jesse Sowell selected Hanshaw to take over the department of religious studies as they entered phased retirement in Fall 2007. “We found out about Hanshaw when he still was in grad school,” Sowell said. “We were interested in him because he won an award for teaching in a public college. For a religious professor to win an award in a public school said a lot about
bit of everything.” Originally, Goodwill wanted to do a makeover of a house with a group like Habitat for Humanity. They switched gears ROOM, page 3
RENOVATE, page 3
Meisa Keivani Najafabadi | Rambler Staff
Goodwill Inc. remodeled Stewart’s room after she wrote an essay.
Gone are the days of pink vertical blinds and spending precious dollars on a load of laundry. In are the days of late-night gaming tournaments and Lizzy lounge chairs. After bringing in two consultants last spring, John White and Bambi Harris, Residence Life at Texas Wesleyan implemented several suggestions from the consultants’ report over the summer. Most renovations suggested were focused on the lobbies of Stella Russell and Elizabeth Means Armstrong Halls, with plans to re-carpet and paint Wesleyan Village. “They looked like the 1960s dorms, and so we had done some painting, but this is a total makeover,” said Pati Alexander, vice president for enrollment and student services. “Elizabeth was converted to all singles. We pulled out the extra beds and then we ordered recliner chairs; they’re called Lizzy chairs.”
in the SUB as a swim coach. “Everything in my life is on campus,” Stewart said. “It’s not only my living area; it’s my study area, my personal area and my hangout area. It’s my little
Wesleyan continues to upgrade technology with SMART boards Shauna Banks
who he is.” This will be Hanshaw’s third year at Wesleyan, and he said he was recently promoted to chair of religious studies. Hanshaw said he prefers to keep his religious affiliation quiet because he does not want his students to come into his class with preconceived notions. Melondy Doddy, junior psychology and comparative religions major, said she appreciates Hanshaw’s lack of religious bias. “His ability to step out of his own religion and to teach about other cultures and religions is one of the most interesting things about him,” Doddy said. “I think he is a real progressive leader at Wesleyan, and he is one day going to put Wesleyan on the map.”
As technology continues to change the way people live their daily lives, Texas Wesleyan officials are keeping their promises to inject it into their curriculum, giving students in many majors the opportunity to use cutting-edge devices in their classes. Dr. Hector Quintanilla identify said the School of Business decided to purchase three new SMART boards for faculty to use in their classes within the Armstrong Mabee-Business Center. This newer technology uses an interactive white board, digital ink pens, a computer and projector, allowing faculty to share examples and lecture notes with students. Students can also access entire lectures, including class notes written on the SMART board
through different software, including Blackboard, currently used by some faculty, said associate professor of economics and finance Dr. Kalpana Pai. “For me it’s easy to go back to materials I’ve already covered. But for students I think it’s a good tool to have,” Pai said. These three new SMART boards were purchased with restricted money donated to and raised by the school of business, and make up only a small fraction of the 21 installed across the campus, said Title III instructional technologist Meghan Foster. In 2007, AT&T donated $25,000 to the university as part of an initiative to bring technology into the classroom and use it on campus. “As part of a project proposal, we basically promised AT&T that we would continue that initiative,”
Quintanilla said. “We took that money and we did several things with it. We took some of that money and bought new chairs and new desks for a lot of these classrooms.” Some of the money donated by AT&T was also used to purchase the first two SMART boards for the AMB in 2007. Quintanilla said each board is approximately $2,000 for all the components needed, and about $1,500-$2,000 to install. Most other SMART boards currently on campus were purchased through the Title III Grant in 2007, where the university received nearly $2 million from the U.S. Department of Education’s Strengthening Institutions Program, Foster said. Foster also said the SMART boards are just BOARD, page 3