SERVING THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT AUSTIN COMMUNITY SINCE 1900 @THEDAILYTEXAN | THEDAILYTEXAN.COM
MONDAY, APRIL 16, 2018
VOLUME 118, ISSUE 140
N E WS
O PI N I O N
LI FE&A RTS
Journalist and “Dark Money” author Jane Mayer speaks about billionaires in politics. PAGE 2
Newly elected student leaders talk about goals for upcoming year. PAGE 4
UT students help each other master the art of storytelling. PAGE 8
Texas gets first road series win with Red River Rivalry victories in Norman. PAGE 6
ashley ephraim | the daily texan staff
Diagnosed with MS, student Amie Jean breaks down misconceptions while finishing 10K Longhorn Run. Editor’s Note: This is The Daily Texan’s seventh installment of The 5% Project in collaboration with the UT-Austin chapter of National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ). By Jacqueline Briddell & Chase Karacostas @jacbrid @chasekaracostas
angela wang | the daily texan staff Finance junior Amie Jean, center, celebrates crossing the Longhorn Run finish line with Patrick Olson, left, and Dylan Adkins, finance and business honors senior, Saturday morning.
s most UT students power walk to class with headphones in their ears and textbooks in hand, finance junior Amie Jean carefully navigates her way through the crowds on Speedway with her sidekick Alfred, her wheelchair. Coming to UT, Jean thought she was prepared for not seeing many people who looked like her. She knew coming to a predominantly white institution would have its fair share of “tough” experiences, but she said nothing could prepare her for being the only black student in classes with hundreds of students. “I felt like I needed to join as many black groups as possible,” Jean said. “I felt like maybe I was gasping for air and trying to be
as black as I could so I wouldn’t lose myself.” Then, as she neared the end of her sophomore year, Jean was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, an autoimmune disease damaging her nerves and making it much more difficult to get around without a wheelchair.
The Monday after spring break last year, Jean said she left her afternoon class in Burdine Hall when she started to feel extremely weak and could barely walk. After making her way to the East Mall, she ran into her friend Lauren Taylor who took her to the emergency room. Three weeks later, after the hospital ran several tests, Jean was told she had MS. “I just did my best to be there (for her),” said Taylor, who is now a UT alumna. “I didn’t want Amie to feel like a burden. Nor did I want her to feel like she wasn’t capable of achieving her best work because she couldn’t use her body the way she used to.” Five months before her diagnosis, Jean said her knee started hurting. At the time,
JEAN read more on page 2
UT Law School alumni to face off in race for Democratic district nomination, hold forum
Food for Fines program to waive UT parking citations through peanut butter donations
By Chad Lyle @lylechad
Texas Law School alumnae Chris Perri and Julie Oliver returned to UT Saturday to earn student votes ahead of a runoff election that will determine which one of them will be the Democratic nominee for Congressional District 25 in the midterm elections. Perri and Oliver participated in a forum jointly hosted by the University Democrats and Texas Law Democrats. “This is mainly to educate voters on campus,” said co-moderator Shelby Hobohm from the University Democrats, a mechanical engineering and government senior. “Runoffs historically have a much lower turnout … if we want people to turn out we want them to be educated.” The Democratic nominee for
District 25 will be officially determined in an election on May 22, and the winner will face off against Republican incumbent Roger Williams for his seat in the U.S. House of Representatives in November. Throughout the forum, Oliver cited her own upbringing as proof of government programs helping Americans succeed. “At the age of 17, I ran away from home … found myself homeless, then I got pregnant, so I went back home,” Oliver said in her opening remarks. “With the help of my mom, and with the assistance of Medicaid, I gave birth to a very healthy young baby girl. That daughter is now a PhD student at TCU. I put myself through college completely debt free with the help of government programs … and then 23 years ago, I got my acceptance letter to the University of Texas School of Law, one of the proudest moments of my life.”
Perri said his work as a criminal defense attorney is what motivated him to run for office. “The final straw for me was Jeff Sessions becoming Attorney General,” Perri said. “(Sessions) told his prosecutors you can’t negotiate with defense attorneys to get probation sentences on these drug crimes … you have to sentence people to five or ten years. He did that to fill the private prisons, which had directly donated to the Trump inaugural committee.” Either candidate will face tough odds in the general election as Williams has won his last three elections with 58 percent of the vote or more. “The incumbent obviously has an advantage because he’s in office,” said co-moderator Alex Clark, Texas Law Democrats President and law student. “People don’t necessarily know (Perri and Oliver’s) names yet.”
By Anna Lassmann @annalassmann
The Food for Fines pilot program, through Parking and Transportation Services and Student Government, is collecting 40-ounce plastic jars of peanut butter to dismiss eligible parking citations. “(Food for Fines) gives students an inexpensive way to resolve a parking citation that offers something back to the campus community and it helps the (campus) to build food reserves for the campus food bank,” PTS director Bobby Stone said. The pilot program began accepting donations April 11, and the last day to donate will be April 27. Donations are being accepted to the pilot program at the campus parking garages during their weekday hours.
Citations eligible for peanut butter donations must have been issued between August 16 and April 10 of the current academic school year. To pay off a $15 to $35 citation, a donation of two 40-ounce peanut butter jars is required, and to pay off a $75 citation three 40-ounce jars are required. Only one citation may be forgiven through Food for Fines. “Peanut butter has a long shelf life,” Stone said. “It is a protein that both vegetarians and non-vegetarians can eat and it’s something that food banks across the United States routinely like to collect because of its shelf-life and the fact that it’s a protein.” All donations through the Food for Fines pilot program will benefit the new Campus Food Pantry through
PEANUT BUTTER page 3
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By Savnnah Jobman @longhornsav
As registration approaches, students will join waitlists for classes such as Quantum Mechanics and Calculus. But they will also fight for spots in classes such as social dance, a one-credit physical education class at UT. According to Michael Sanders, director of the physical education division, over 3,000 students enroll in PED classes every semester. Students can take classes such as weight training, taekwondo and handball. Each class meets twice a week but counts for one credit hour. Students receive a letter grade based mainly on participation, which means the classes often positively affect students’ GPAs. Sanders said these classes serve as much more than a GPA boost, as the classes give students the opportunity to meet others with similar interests. Anna Remlinger, an
anthropology senior who has taken multiple PED courses, said she saw herself and others benefit physically and mentally from participating in the classes. “One of my friends (in my running class) said
News Reporters Savannah Jobman, Chad Lyle, Nicole Stuessy, Kateri David, Tristan Stitt, Eilish O’Sullivan Photographers Alex Briseño, Griffin Smith, Jessica Joseph, Avery Chahl
she took a semester off of running,” Remlinger said. “She didn’t exercise, she didn’t take a physical education class, and she said it was the worst semester she had at UT.” Remlinger said she took the Beginning
Running course to prepare for her first 10k race, which is about six miles long. “Before I would actually put myself down while running, like telling myself I
couldn’t finish the run,” Remlinger said. “But now I realize I can, and I was able to run the Cap 10k a lot better this year.” Ariana Rodriguez, public health junior, said it was difficult to wake up “at the crack of dawn” to go run for the class, but the friends she found in the class encouraged her to keep going. “When you run with other people, it’s a whole lot more encouraging,” Rodriguez said. “You get placed into pace groups, so you’re running with people who are on the same level as you are. It’s not like you’re running with people who are completely out of your league. It was a really good way to make you work out.” Sanders said the courses inspire students to maintain active lifestyles even after college. “Once you structure an activity, you’re much more likely to go to that activity,” Sanders said. “(The class) becomes an incentive for people to keep exercising and make lifelong changes in their overall behavior.”
‘Dark Money’ author talks buying influence in American politics
Sports Reporters Shane Lewis, Robert Larkin
By Kateri David @milklight_
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Investigative journalist Jane Mayer took to the AT&T Amphitheater stage Friday, followed by a hailstorm of applause from UT students and faculty, many of whom clutched her 2016 National Bestseller “Dark Money.” As in her novel, the discussion focused on her findings involving the influence of billionaires in American politics. Mayer said today’s most influential businessmen are oil tycoons and brothers Charles and David Koch. “You cannot find out what is happening in American politics if you don’t chase the money,” Mayer said. “As I discovered, you cannot chase the money today without stumbling across the Kochs.” Mayer estimates the Kochs have spent nearly $100 million on funding conservative nonprofits and politicians, such as the Tea Party. However, she said there is no way to know how much “dark money” has been invested. “(The Kochs have) created a web of private foundations, think tanks, academic programs … all of which can, to varying degrees, hide the identities of the donors,” Mayer said. The Kochs are not alone. Before “Dark Money,” Mayer followed George Soros, the liberal financier who broke all
continues from page 1 doctors at University Health Services thought it was tendinitis, which Jean thought was weird, but she decided not to question it. “It always seemed to bounce back,” Jean said about her knee hurting periodically. “I didn’t take it as something seriously.” Jean said she also started to notice, without realizing what it meant, some of the telltale signs of MS: worsened handwriting, clumsiness, hand tremors and “foot drop,” a symptom where a person is unable to walk heel-to-toe. When she was diagnosed, Jean said it was a relief. After experiencing strange symptoms for so long, it was nice to finally have an “umbrella” to explain it all, she said. “I just thought everything was my fault,” Jean said. “One of the only things I was happy about with (the diagnosis) was knowing I’m not crazy.” Jean left the hospital in a wheelchair, and now uses an electric wheelchair, which she named after Batman’s butler, Alfred, to get around. She said she can, however, usually stand for 10 minutes or walk about 50 yards without getting too fatigued. Benjamin Greenberg, a
angela wang | the daily texan staff Author and investigative journalist Jane Mayer answers audience questions after reading an excerpt of her novel, “Dark Money,” on Saturday morning. previous campaign spending records in an effort to prevent George W. Bush from being re-elected in 2004. “Big money is a bipartisan problem and there is plenty of it on both sides of the political spectrum,” Mayer said. Mayer said while there is laundered money in both parties, the Kochs situation is unprecedented. In The Koch Effect
study, researchers assert the brothers have “a strong gravitational pull,” drawing candidates toward ultra-free market policies and small government. Event coordinator Julie Irwin said her intention in having Mayer speak for the Center for Leadership and Ethics speaker of the year event is to expose students to varying ethical dimensions.
“A lot of corporate money is invested in politics and education, and we want students who go work for corporations to have that ethical aspect of their education,” Irwin said. Government sophomore Connor Johnson said he was thrilled to hear Mayer speak, but left feeling discouraged. “There needs to be campaign finance reform,” Johnson said. “As private citizens we
can donate $2,700 and billionaires get around this limit through loopholes in the law.” Although she fears the concentration of political influence, Mayer said she is optimistic given the successful anti-establishment campaigns of Trump and Sanders. “The American public is poised to do what it’s done in the past … demand change and get it,” Mayer said.
neurologist and member of UT Southwestern MS clinic, said people develop MS when their immune system gets “confused” and begins to “wage war” on nerve cells, damaging them and sometimes permanently affecting their function. These cells are unlike most others and cannot be healed easily, if at all. MS also affects different people in different ways, depending on which nerve cells are attacked, Greenberg said. Worsened vision and difficulty walking are two common symptoms, he said. Typically, Greenberg said most people do not experience “severe disability” until 10 to 15 years after being diagnosed, if they are left untreated. “(MS) is extremely treatable, and the treatments we use are meant to prevent the immune system from causing more damage,” Greenberg said.
who knew me best didn’t know me at all,” Jean said. Jean said that especially in the black community, the stigma of being able to cure yourself and not needing to go to the doctor is what led her to partially step away from the black community at UT. “At first it really pained me to belong to another minority,” Jean said. “Low-income background, black, disabled, first-generation … I don’t want to merely be a title to these people.” Jean said she started to feel increasingly isolated. It was hard to try to explain to other people why she suddenly started canceling plans or not coming to meetings because her symptoms occasionally prevented her from going out. “It’s a lonely diagnosis,” Jean said. “Nobody understands, and nobody can understand. How do I tell you my toes are burning, my joints are burning today?” Despite it all, Jean said she doesn’t feel defined by having MS and hopes to someday regain enough strength so Alfred will no longer be such an integral part of her life. “For the most part, it’s not too difficult,” Jean said of life with MS. “It’s just different.”
visitor center since her freshman year, and her boss, Patrick Olson, tries to get everyone who works there to participate in the Longhorn Run. Last year, prior to her diagnosis with MS, she had been planning on running, but when she left the hospital, she was too weak to compete. Jean had not planned on participating in the Longhorn Run this year. But Olson, who visited her in the hospital following her diagnosis, said he is “always” thinking about the Longhorn Run and immediately began trying to figure out how she could participate. Growing up near the Boston Marathon, Olson said he knew about wheelchairs that allow people with mobility issues to participate in runs. He searched for several weeks and found Ainsley’s Angels, a nonprofit providing both wheelchairs and runners to push them for anyone who wants to participate in a run but cannot do so alone. Olson said he called Ainsley’s Angels representatives from all around the state. In days, Cassey Allen, their Central Texas ambassador, reached out and said they had a chair Jean could use. For the past month and a half, Jean and Olson met weekly with Allen and
another ambassador to train for the race. “It may look to someone like I’m pushing Amie, but we’re basically running the race together,” Olson said. “I’m the legs, that’s basically it. She’s the energy and the drive and the momentum.” Allen said she loved helping Olson and Jean for the past few weeks. “I think (Jean) was caught by surprise by what it would be like to be out there,” Allen said. On Saturday, Olson and Jean met at 7:30 a.m. to get ready. After getting a personalized announcement from the race’s emcee, Jean, Olson and Dylan Adkins, who was a backup for Olson, took off. The trio was given an early start, so they would not run over any runners. Throughout the race, Jean served as a navigator and DJ for Olson and Adkins as they wound their way through the 6.2-mile course. Right around the 45 minute mark, the three crossed the finish line at Speedway and 21st. “It happened so much faster than any practice day,” Jean said. “It was such a good time, such a good feeling, very thrilling, like, ‘Hey, we did it.’ This is definitely something I want to continue doing.”
Jean admitted that after her diagnosis, many people in the black community would ask her when she would be “back on her feet,” but she said it wasn’t easy to admit she did not actually know. “I felt like because the black community is so disconnected to even the term ‘disability,’ that all of a sudden, the people
Jean has worked at UT’s
MONDAY, APRIL 16, 2018
Texas Shark Tank hosts first competition Advertising campaign pitch for local Austin-based bars wins competition. By Eilish O’Sullivan @evosullivan
n advertising campaign for local alcohol advertisements to be placed in Austin-based bars was the winning pitch at this year’s first statewide Texas Shark Tank competition. “We’re replacing really boring commercials with commercials people want to see,” said Jansen Derr, computer science senior. “It feels really good to win. We’ve been working on this for months and months, and winning just validates all of our hard work.” Derr and his business partners, Gilad Oved, computer science senior, and Zack Crowell, a student at St. Edwards University, were just one of 25 teams chosen to compete in this event. The event, which was hosted by the University Securities Investment Team and the Longhorn Entrepreneurship Agency, helps students build on their entrepreneurial ideas. This year’s event featured students from various Texas universities, such as Rice University and Texas State University, and is for students who have not received a lot of funding for their ideas. “There are a lot of people here who are passionate for entrepreneurship and there are a lot of people here who are passionate about helping other people realize that,” said Eileen Bau, director of marketing for USIT. The event was held Saturday at the
jessica joseph | the daily texan staff From left to right, Zack Crowell, Jansen Derr and Gilad Oved deliver the winning pitch at the Texas Shark Tank competition on Saturday. Student Activity Center. It was the first collaboration between USIT, which provides financial and accounting information to UT students, and LEA, which fosters student-run entrepreneurship on campus. Unlike the well-known show “Shark Tank,” the winning pitches do not have to exchange equity, or give up a piece of their startup, for funding. “You can come in with an idea … (or) a
startup with little to no experience and we actually help you (develop your pitches),” said Bau, marketing and Plan II junior. “You do get the chance to pitch your idea to people who not only have experience in entrepreneurship, but also have the resources to potentially launch your idea.” Only four teams made it to the finals, with the winning prize being co-working space at Capital Factory, which provides
startups an opportunity to meet investors, employees, mentors and customers. “We are really excited that through (Texas) Shark Tank, and our really fantastic partnership with USIT, we are going to be able to support the student entrepreneurs who are already working on something here while they’re in college,” said Daniel Miyares, management information systems senior and LEA director.
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the Student Emergency Services, which food pantry coordinator William Ross said supports students who need food. “We want to support the students who are struggling with food insecurity,” Ross said. “We also want to encourage an educational understanding around food insecurity within the UT community.” The food pantry began raising awareness and building inventory in January, and will be fully open to all students on May 4. Ross said the Food for Fines program is a way to help sustain the food
pantry initiative. “I think what’s great about (Food for Fines) is that it is one of a many-pronged approach to sustain the food pantry,” Ross said. “I think a lot of students, faculty and staff get parking tickets occasionally and (now) they get a way to support a good cause and waive those fees under certain tickets.” SG put a proposal together for PTS to initiate the implementation of Food for Fines. SG Vice President Micky Wolf said Food for Fines was an initiative the Isaiah-Sydney campaign ran on last year, and SG wanted to see it implemented this year. After the end of the pilot program, PTS will have to look at the financial impact of
the program to see whether they can still generate their necessary funds before permanently instating Food for Fines, Stone said. “While I think (Food for Fines) is a great program that has a lot of value to the campus, we’ll have to weigh in on the financial impact versus the impact back to campus to see if it’s worthy for us to continue it,” Stone said. Wolf, a Plan II and business honors senior, said he hopes to see Food for Fines become a yearly or semesterly part of PTS. “I think that it’s a really valuable initiative and I’m glad that we’ll be able to help support it, while also make students’ cost expenses go down a little bit,” Wolf said.
JANHAVI NEMAWARKAR, VIK SHIRVAIKAR, LIZA ANDERSON
MONDAY, APRIL 16, 2018
FORUM EDITORS | @TEXANOPINION
By Janhavi Nemawarkar, Vik Shirvaikar and Liza Anderson With only about 20 percent of the student body consistently participating in campus-wide elections, legislative student organizations have a widespread perception of being unable to create useful change for students. However, Student Government and academic councils have the unique opportunity to
produce legislation and convey student concerns to administrators, who can then help improve the student experience in meaningful ways. This week, we spotlight newly elected leaders from Student Government and the Senate of College Councils, each of whom present their visions and make the case that students do have the power to enact initiatives that positively impact campus life. Benjamin Solder, speaker of the Student Government Assembly, speaks about the Assembly’s goals
in the upcoming year. Solder hopes students begin to see SG as a means to change campus, and encourages interested students to apply for internal positions, speak at the beginning of Assembly meetings, or even contact him directly with questions. David Jenkins, president of the Senate of College Councils, explains how the organization functions in coordination with the 21 college councils, and lists some goals for the upcoming year. Jenkins emphasizes a commitment to receiving student feedback,
communicating with organizations outside of the traditional legislative spheres and staying persistent to ensure that student voices are heard. As always, if you have thoughts about this subject or any other, please reach out to us at email@example.com. Nemawarkar is a Plan II and government junior from Austin. Shirvaikar is a math and economics junior from Frisco. Anderson is a Plan II and history sophomore from Houston.
Student Government, Senate leaders present hopes, goals
Benjamin Solder, Speaker of the Student Government Assembly
David Jenkins, President of the Senate of College Councils rachel tyler | the daily texan staff
What types of legislation does the Student Government Assembly pass?
Historically, we’ve passed pieces to convey student opinions, pieces that are more publicity-focused for ongoing SG initiatives, and pieces that try and lobby legislators one way or the other for student-focused issues. So in the past assembly, there were one or two DACA pieces, to say that Student Government supports undocumented students here on campus — one was a little more broad, in reaction to a particular bill, and the other was playing off a particular SG initiative being run by Alejandrina and Micky. We also had a lot of debate after YCT’s A-frame was vandalized by the Revolutionary Student Front, and had a reaction piece saying that we need to both promote free speech and organizations’ property rights here on campus.
How does the SG Assembly work with the Student Body President and Vice President?
We’re currently in the works of establishing a working relationship to figure out who wants to cover what, and who’s going to tackle what issues. Historically, there have been both positive and less positive working relationships, so it does depend on the individual attitudes of those entities. Last year, between Alejandrina and Micky and the Assembly, there was a very positive working relationship — we had their Executive Board drafting legislation with members of the Assembly. There wasn’t a ton of overlap in terms of the initiatives we were working on, but there was lots of overlap in terms of general discussion about how we can improve campus.
What are some of the Assembly’s general goals for the upcoming year? Our general goal is to keep the ball rolling in terms of what we’ve been doing with legislation, but maybe tone it down in terms of making sure our pieces are more powerful. We tend to pass a lot of things without a high degree of discrimination, so maybe we focus on passing pieces that are better-researched and better-written, pieces that are more convincing to administrators, pieces that have more student support through surveys or other data. I think we can definitely improve the quality of legislation.
“Students who have good ideas are encouraged to come forward, express those ideas, and incorporate them into the work they would be doing.”
But I also want to take the focus of the Assembly off of just being a legislative entity. I think representatives run on specific platform points that have very little to do with specific pieces of legislation. They’re instead running on platform points that have to do with tangible change on campus, and I think we should be restructuring the Assembly to accommodate that. I was able to sit down with almost all of our representatives so far, and find our their top three or top five campaign platform points that they really want to work on, and there was a lot of overlap. So I was able to group people into smaller sets of two or three that we are describing as task forces, and then those were assigned to the standing Assembly committees so that the committees are no longer just legislation review entities. They are instead working groups that meet once a week and talk about meetings with administrators, funding and the next steps towards creating tangible
change. So we’re talking about allowing absences for classes based on mental health, bringing diverse perspectives and a more diverse student population into liberal arts, expanding FIGs with funding and adequate training for mentors, providing open-source textbooks since students have to pay too much. There are a lot of really great ideas, and if we can actually structure what we’re doing, hopefully we can make some progress.
How does SG plan to reunite campus given the divisive events of the election?
Currently, Dean Lilly, the vice president of student affairs, is reviewing all of the changes we made to the Election Code last year, and she is going to come back with suggestions for some sort of code overhaul. Then we need to sit down as a collective with the Supreme Court, with the Executive Board, with representatives from the Assembly, and with the five other entities included in the Campus-Wide Election Code, in the same room, and actually discuss what changes we need to make to prevent the disruption to campus that we had in the previous election cycle. We’ve tried to come up with blanket policies to cover all social media, because it’s ever-changing, ever-growing, and we would be hard-pressed to adapt with each year to whatever new social media outlet there is. But obviously that’s not been effective, so we’re going to have to get creative. I think specifying that a like, or heart react, or upvote on whatever post does not qualify as speech on behalf of a campaign, and clarifying that for the ESB. Another great idea is that we need to write essentially a penal code, with each possible infraction a campaign could commit, and what the penalty would be.
How do you plan make the SG Assembly more transparent to the student body?
The newsletter is an underused tool of communication — we have social media accounts that not many people like and follow, but we have access to campus-wide emails, that we send out maybe twice a semester? So a biweekly newsletter, that’s not just a boring and bland review of legislation, but is actually personalized and engaging to students, would be hopefully a better way for us to publicize what’s going on. I also personally bought a tripod, so we can record meetings without poor freshmen having to film by hand, and we’re starting to archive those all online so people can go back through as a data source — those should be open records. The fact that we didn’t have a student government website for four months last year still bothers me, but that’s not going to happen this year. I want to make sure that we as student government are holding ourselves accountable to a certain bar.
How can students get involved with SG to promote their own ideas and initiatives?
So we struggle with this a lot, and I’m not sure I have the perfect answer. But first of all, students need to see SG as a means to change on campus, and I’m not sure that’s what students think of SG. They think of a whole bunch of people in suits, who are full of hot air and want to hear their own voices and sit around and pretend to be important. So the first thing is changing the image — everybody knows they have a student government, but they need to think of us as a way to change campus, so that if they have an idea to make things better, their default reaction is to go to SG. Beyond that, I don’t think we’ve historically done a good job of publishing our applications to get involved, but this next week, our internal application is going to open up for all of our agency director positions, our deputy chief of staff positions, our policy director positions, and while these positions will be guided in terms of the campaign points that Colton and Mehraz ran on and won on, students who have good ideas are definitely encouraged to come forward, express those ideas, and incorporate them into whatever other work they would be doing. We also meet every Tuesday at 7 p.m., and at the start of the meeting during Open Forum, students can speak for two minutes about whatever they want — I know representatives really appreciate it, and we like having a means to connect to interested students on anything. And if people have questions, they can contact any of us or me directly, and I can put them in touch with whatever college or initiative they want to work on.
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What types of legislation does Senate pass?
Senate passes legislation that specifically deals with changing the academic experience here at UT. So anything relating to courses, registration, schedules, curriculum, and then also anything on the periphery of academics that impacts how a student may perform academically, like creating a new major or minor, is within our purview.
How does Senate work with individual colleges and councils?
Senate features 21 college councils that each represent the student bodies of their individual colleges in our assembly, including both undergraduate and graduate colleges. We work directly with them, first by forming our collaborative legislative assembly where all initiatives brought through Senate are approved or denied by every single one of the councils through a voting process. Those councils are also able to submit their own legislation on behalf of their college, which will be reviewed by the other college councils. And then on a more personal level, we just coordinate things like events, publicity and even socials to make sure that all of the colleges are working together to help promote each other’s activities and support each other’s attempts at positive change here at UT.
What makes for a positive working relationship between Senate and the colleges?
I believe that a positive working relationship between Senate and the colleges comes down to whether or not Senate is actively responding to the concerns, issues, and ideas brought up by the colleges. Our assembly is made up of the college councils, and we are supposed to be serving those voices directly, so if there’s a college that feels as though they have not had their concerns heard throughout a year, that means Senate is not forming a productive working relationship with them. To me, it means a lot of direct communication, not only on our legislative initiatives, but on everything that internal Senate is doing as a University-wide representative organization, and how it corresponds to the individual college-based things that the councils are putting on. And then also making sure that in all the interactions Senate has with university administration, that we are constantly keeping councils up-to-date.
What are some of Senate’s general goals for the upcoming year?
Some of our general goals for the upcoming year are, first, expanding our outreach. In years past, Senate hasn’t had any sort of institutional way of getting feedback from groups outside of student governance — so if you weren’t a college council, Senate really wasn’t representing your voice as directly as we could be. So this year, that goes into a lot of changing how our communication and legislative systems work in all of our events and policy initiatives. We’re reaching out to student organizations outside the LSO (legislative student organization) circle to find out how specific groups of students feel about the initiatives we’re undertaking, whether we’re undertaking the correct initiatives, and how we can access perspectives that we wouldn’t have otherwise heard. We’re also focused on making the legislative process more transparent and collaborative, both between the college councils and Senate, and the general student body and Senate, in ways like including more council voices in the conversations we have and publicizing our legislation more on a regular basis to ensure the student body knows what Senate is doing and keep us accountable so those changes actually come to fruition.
What are your personal goals for the upcoming year as president?
Some of my personal goals going forward are, first, to have legislation continue to be an even more assembly-wide and organization-wide process. I think in years past, Senate, even though we are a legislative student organization, has had just a few voices really being the majority of those speaking on what legislation goes forward and what legislation we actively pursue. And I feel that every single member of both the college councils and our internal organization should be a voice in our legislative process, so I want to make sure everyone has all the proper information, and has their say on each piece of legislation we come up with. I’d also like to get more involvement on behalf of Senate’s peripheral organizations, such as our
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agencies and University-wide appointments. We have groups like those that represent our interests on more specific issues or for more specific demographics of students, and I think we can do a better job this year of directly reaching out to them and encouraging their involvement in all that we do.
What are some lessons you’ve learned from your experience in past years?
I’d say one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned from Senate over the last few years is just general persistence. Trying to make change at a university is something that happens slowly and with great difficulty, and it’s important as a student who has concerns, or is working with others that have concerns, to keep up the fight on any issues you may bring forward. Administration may not always be 100 percent on board with any changes you want to make, so you have to really carry those changes with you from month to month, from year to year, understanding that unless you keep the conversation alive, no one else is going to do it for you. One of my other biggest lessons is learning how to lean on the people around you. Senate has 21 college councils and a wealth of internal members because we want to represent so many different perspectives and experiences, and I know that no one person, even as the president, can represent everything that a student wants to see at the university, and can know every concern. So always being willing to reach out to the people around me, to get feedback from them, and encouraging others I work with to do the same is really important moving forward.
How can students get involved with Senate to promote their own ideas and initiatives?
For starters, Senate legislation is not restricted to people within our assembly. Any student at UT can participate in and submit their own legislation. It can seem somewhat difficult to get involved, because we don’t have a lot of outreach with the general student body, but part of what we want to do this year through publicizing our legislation more and reaching out to student organizations is ensuring people know that they don’t have to be super familiar with the workings of our organization or be a member to get involved with the conversations that we’re having. Every student at UT is welcome to contribute their voice to the greater sum.
“ People don’t have to be super familiar with the workings of our organization or be a member to get involved.”
Additionally, we intend to have a lot more feedback on everything that we get done, including restructuring some of our internal committees and holding public meetings, like town halls and campus conversations, where students can provide their opinions on the legislation we’ve passed, what we should pass in the future, and what we should be addressing that we’re not currently addressing. Those are events that will be publicized and open to the entire student body, and hopefully the student body will feel comfortable with those events and engaged with Senate as their voice. Every UT student is also eligible to apply for Senate’s first-year program, called our at-large program. In it, you’ll be assigned to a Senate committee and do a lot of specific work through their focus, as well as your own individual passions. The application is open to all UT students; it happens at the beginning of the fall semester, within the first week or two. If accepted, you serve through the entirety of that academic year, and we highly encourage anyone who wants to get involved with student advocacy and academic change to apply.
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MONDAY, APRIL 16, 2018
avery chahl | the daily texan staff A new, celebratory image of black women in theater came to the Winship Theatre on April 13, but with a twist — they’re a family of witches.
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copyright sup pop, and reproduced with permission King Tuffs latest LP “The Other” delves into new territory with a psychedelic-folk twist
continues from page 8 track The Other is a slow, somber ballad about hitting rock bottom, wandering through life aimlessly. The lyrics, “No agenda, no master plan no important dates no reason to be alive at all” speak to this theme of sorrow. With ups and down through the record, the album comes full circle with the ending track, “No Man’s
Land.” The soft ballad of redemption is a perfect closing song, giving the listener a sense of closure. Lyrics such as, “That must have been the last time I cried, from that moment forward all my teardrops disappeared” encapsulate feelings of hope one hopes to come to after a difficult time. Thomas’ ability to create a collection of music that connects and tells a story as he does on The Other
THE OTHER ARTIST: Kyle Thomas GENRE: Psychedlic Folk SCORE: speaks volumes to his development as a musician. The Other blended psych, rock, folk and pop genres make for a unique arrangement that is sure to speak to multiple audiences.
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topics. They have become integral cultural components of play, but Alice Stanley, a graduate student in the MFA directing program and the director of “MotherWitch,” said the cast and crew endeavored to accurately represent Haitian and Wiccan cultures. Tate and Stanley also said they were eager to release a production that challenges
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been able to really finish anything,” Terry said. “I’ve been getting more serious about it lately and I figured that having a group around me would keep me accountable, help me finish it and give some good feedback.” According to Dolliver, the meetings are usually quiet because a lot of writers are fairly introverted. She said the setup of the meetings allows the students a lot of free time to get to know each other and read through everyone’s work. “We’ve found that even
the typical portrayal of black women in film and theatre. “Representation is a huge thing that you get (in this play),” Stanley said. “It’s a story of three black women. It’s about celebration of their power (and) … it’s about overcoming oppression without directly (talking about) the oppression.” Tate agreed, saying he wanted to create a space for a more mundane representation of people of color that does not include tragedy,
while using magical elements to celebrate their power. “It doesn’t have to be ‘Precious,’” Tate said. “Not that those stories aren’t valid and important and needed as well, because they are. But this story deals with kind of normal dynamics that we don’t get to see through a lens of people of color. We get more tragic, dramatic stories with people of color, particularly black people. And that’s not what this story is.”
though the context of the meeting may be a bit quieter and there may be a lot of introverts coming, they really enjoy getting to form new friendships with writers and getting to share their work,” Dolliver said. The founders wanted to give students the same opportunities they had during the writing workshops that are offered through the creative writing certificate program at UT. Dolliver said she hopes the club inspires students to join the certificate program, but she’s happy to provide a space for those who can’t or don’t want to. “We had talked to some other writers and found out
that sometimes people just can’t fit the creative writing certificate into their schedule, or they’re interested in writing but don’t want to commit to something that large just yet, so we decided to start this,” Dolliver said. While writing is solitary to an extent, it’s always better to get feedback. Taylor said AllWrite All-Write All-Write is willing to help out any writers seeking assistance or a writing community. “Everyone’s welcome to come, and I would strongly encourage any writers interested in meeting more writers to attend our meeting,” Taylor said.
SPORTS EDITOR @TEXANSPORTS
MONDAY, APRIL 16, 2018
Texas sweeps Red Raiders, remains undefeated in Big 12 By Robert Larkin @ r_larkintexas
katie bauer | the daily texan file Junior infielder Kody Clemens swings at a pitch at UFCU Disch-falk Field. Clemens went 4-4 in Texas’ 5-3 win over Oklahoma on Saturday, including his Big 12-leading 11th home run of the season.
Longhorns steal Red River Rivalry series
Texas takes series after backto-back comeback victories over the Sooners. By Shane Lewis @shanelewis4204
or the Longhorns, it appeared their road woes had traveled with them to Norman, Oklahoma. In Friday’s series opener against the Sooners, the Longhorns trailed by two runs heading into the ninth inning. After trailing for the entirety of the game, Texas had three outs to muster at least two runs to extend the game. But then, Masen Hibbeler happened. With Texas already tacking on a run in the inning, the junior infielder knocked in a clutch two-run RBI double that gave the Longhorns a 7-6 advantage. After holding off Oklahoma in the bottom of the frame, Texas did something it hadn’t done all year — win a series road opener. The dramatic victory setup a successful weekend for the Longhorns. The team took two out of three against their rival and won its first road series of the year. With the series win, Texas now sits only one game back in the loss column of the conference-leading Sooners. On Saturday night, it was the comeback kids at it again. The Sooners jumped on Texas and junior pitcher Chase Shugart in the first inning, scoring three quick runs. But the Longhorns again refused to be deterred by an early deficit. A solo shot from junior infielder Kody Clemens punctuated a Texas rally that tied up the contest at three by the fifth inning. In the eighth inning, freshman designated hitter Zach Zubia completed the comeback. The freshman hammered a two-run home run to left field, giving the Longhorns a 5-3 lead they would hold for the rest of the contest. The home runs from Zubia and Clemens give them a combined 19 on the season. The rest of the Texas roster has combined for 13. In a season of strong showings, midseason All-American Clemens may have had his best outing in the victory. The infielder went 4-for-4 and knocked in his team-leading 37th RBI of the season. “(Clemens) is unbelievable because he has so much confidence in himself and he feels like he can conquer the world when he’s in the batter’s box,” head coach David Pierce said. “That’s a great feeling as a hitter.” After the three-run first inning,
Shugart settled down to throw four scoreless innings. In a rare appearance out of the bullpen, junior pitcher Nolan Kingham came into the contest to hold Oklahoma in check. The righty struck out six batters over the game’s final four innings. Shugart said the competitiveness between him and Kingham, usually a starter, has improved them both. “I’m still trying to beat (the other starters) in what they do and they’re trying to beat me and what I do,” Shugart said. “That inter-competition between us has really helped us out.” While the first two games of the three-game slate were characterized by comeback Texas victories, the Longhorns fell flat in the series finale. The Sooners ran out to an early advantage, and this time, there was no magic left in Texas as Oklahoma cruised to a 6-0 victory.
Clemens is unbelievable because he has so much confidence in himself and he feels like he can conquer the world when he’s in the batter’s box.”
It wasn’t an ideal start for Longhorns early on Sunday morning. Trailing by two runs heading into the bottom of the third inning, Texas didn’t look anything like its dominant self from its first two wins over Texas Tech. “Coming into an early start on Sunday, it’s not easy,” Texas head coach Connie Clark said. “The coaches got on them a little bit about effort.” But the Longhorns quickly shrugged off their early morning woes, responding with six consecutive runs en route to a 6-2 victory over the Red Raiders at McCombs Field. Texas (26–15) moved to 9–0 in Big 12 play for the second time in program history. “It’s always good to sweep, especially coming into an early start on Sunday,” Clark said. “I instinctively saw them (respond), and you could see it in their body language to put (the rough start) behind them and move forward.” Redshirt junior pitcher Erica Wright forfeited only two runs on five hits while striking out five Texas Tech hitters in a complete game performance, good enough for her fourth victory of the season. “We came out and had the plan to work the outside corner and (Wright’s) best pitch, the rise (ball),” sophomore catcher Taylor Ellsworth said. “We were able to mix speeds well, and she trusts me and I trust her.” Texas’ rough start began quickly after the 11 a.m. first pitch, in the first inning after a misplayed ball by junior right fielder Bekah Alcozer allowed the Red Raiders to grab an early 1-0 lead — their first lead of the entire series. Junior first baseman Jessica Hartwell added another run to the Texas Tech lead in the third, hammering a hanging breaking ball from Wright for a solo home run and the two-run advantage. In need of a response to the early deficit, junior center fielder Ki’Audra Hayter came up big for the Texas offense with an infield hit that resulted in her reaching base on a throwing error. Senior designated player Paige von Sprecken and sophomore left fielder Kaitlyn Washington capitalized from there, lacing back-to-back doubles to left field to tie the game at 2-2.
An inning later, freshman second baseman Janae Jefferson claimed the Longhorns’ first lead of the game. The Humble, Texas, native sent a ball through the left side of the infield for an RBI single and the 3-2 lead. Following a pair of scoreless innings from Wright, the Texas offense opened the floodgates in the sixth. Von Sprecken doubled home her second RBI of the day, and Ellsworth sent a RBI double down the right-field line just two batters later to make it a 6-2 game. Wright sat down the final three Texas Tech hitters to finalize her complete game and the victory. “(The win) helps with our momentum and our confidence coming into Tuesday afternoon against Baylor,” Wright said. Wright’s complete game was the third consecutive effort of the weekend after von Sprecken and junior pitcher Brooke Bolinger both recorded complete games in victories on Friday and Saturday. In those two games, the Longhorns outscored the Red Raiders by an 8-2 margin and outhit them 15-7. The Longhorns return to action when they seek to extend their undefeated conference record as they host No. 16 Baylor on Tuesday at 4:30 p.m.
brooke crim | the daily texan file Freshman second baseman Janae Jefferson slides home during Texas’ 5-2 win over Kansas on March 24. Jefferson’s RBI single on Sunday gave Texas its first lead in the Longhorns’ 6-2 win over Texas Tech Sunday.
DO YOUR PART TO HELP KEEP WALLER CREEK CLEAN!
David Pierce, head coach
Sophomore pitcher Blair Henley struggled in his start. Henley was rocked to the tune of nine hits and four earned runs in only 4.1 innings. In his first five starts of the season, Henley had only allowed a combined six runs — over his past five appearances, the sophomore has allowed 14. While the weekend as a whole has to be considered a success, the short stint from Henley epitomizes an area of concern for the Longhorns. “The goal of our starting pitchers is a minimum of seven innings,” Pierce said. “When we start putting guys in a different role earlier, then we change the entire scope of the bullpen for that day.” The Longhorns return to action when they host UT-Rio Grande Valley at 7 p.m. Tuesday night.
2017 WALLER CREEK CLEANUP RESULTS NUMBER of VOLUNTEERS: 52 TRASH PICKUP
REGULAR TRASH: 282 LBS. RECYCLABLES: 66.5 LBS. BULK ITEMS: 235 LBS.
TOTAL: 583.5 lbs.
(The same weight as an Arabian riding horse and that’s a lot of trash picked up!)
MONDAY, APRIL 16, 2018
Todayâ€™s solution will appear here next issue
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CHARLES LIU & CHRIS DUNCAN
LIFE&ARTS EDITORS @THEDAILYTEXAN
MONDAY, APRIL 16, 2018
Writing organization welcomes writers of all genres Student group encourages creative writing among members. By Julia Jones @gubrooke
rom writing urban fantasies to poetry to Dungeons & Dragons campaigns, students in the fiction writing organization All-Write All-Write All-Write are able to create stories and build worlds with the help of their peers. The meetings, held from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. every Tuesday in Mezes 1.208, are open to all students interested in fiction writing. It’s a place for students to meet other writers, gain valuable feedback on their work and learn about opportunities for publication. English junior Alex Taylor and Anna Dolliver, an English and Chinese junior, became friends through their freshman year English and creative writing classes. They started the club in 2016 as an unofficial substitute for creative writing classes, mostly so people who couldn’t fit UT’s creative writing certificate program could still have a group to discuss their
work with. “We really encourage collaborative writing, since often writers may find themselves working alone,” Dolliver said. “It’s helpful to get feedback and to start getting your work out there.” Each meeting begins with writing prompts — a few words, a quote and a photo — and a 10-minute freewrite so that anyone who didn’t prepare material in advance can participate in discussion. Then the group leaders, Taylor, Dolliver and Sam Scheffler, rhetoric and writing senior, showcase a publication that is accepting submissions. Taylor said they try to talk about a wide range of opportunities in fiction writing and that they remain open to other types of writing, including nonfiction. “We have a little bit of a bias just because of the kind of stuff we write,” Taylor said. “But we try to cover a broad category of things so we’re not just a horror writing club or a fantasy writing club.” English sophomore Justin Terry joined the group about a month ago so that he would have people who hold him accountable to finish the fantasy stories he’s started. “From the time I could hold a pen I’ve been writing, but I’ve never
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ella williams | the daily texan staff
THEATRE AND DANCE
‘MotherWitch’ play showcases magic of black women By Francesca D’Annuzio @ftcdnz
Family relationships are already complicated enough, but adding magic and witchcraft to the mix makes everything all the more complicated. UT’s Theatre and Dance Department’s newest play, “MotherWitch,” explores the drama that arises from such a combination, telling the story of three generations of black witches. In doing so, it challenges the notion that stories starring protagonists of color have to be tragic.
“MotherWitch” focuses on the relationships between three generations of magical women in a single family: Sherry, the grandmother; Barb, the mother and lawyer who quit practicing magic; and Darla, who is about to turn 21 and learn about her true heritage. The play opens at the Oscar G. Brockett Theatre on April 13, 19 and 21 at 7:30 p.m. and April 15 at 2:00 p.m. Khali Sykes, the theater and dance freshman portraying Barb, said the three characters have a lot of turmoil within the home, due to generational drama and conflicting personalities. “When you have three generations of women living in one
We all have our similarities and (that is) where we butt heads the most. But underneath all of that is this love that comes out in very odd ways.” Khali Sykes,
theater and dance freshman
household, it’s gonna wreak some havoc,” Sykes said. “It’s a lot of estrogen in one space and we all tend to be very strong-minded.” According to Sykes, that strong-mindedness is precisely what fuels conflict between the characters. “We all have our similarities and (that is) where we butt heads the most. But underneath all of that is this love that comes out in very odd ways,” Sykes said. While the dramatic layers of relationships form the foundation of the play, elements incorporated from other cultures add more complexity to the plot. Travis Tate, the writer of the play and a writing MFA
candidate, said the idea for the play started with his interest in Haitian voodoo and Wiccan cultures, and the idea to add the characters’ familial relationships came second. Tate incorporated a lot of cultural details not only into the script, but into the set as well. “We picked a lot of things from African Yoruban culture (too),” Tate said. “Seashells, things like that, you’ll see on the stage and in the language of the play, and also we mix the altar with the Wiccan altar, which is more crystals.” The members of the cast and crew treaded carefully around these
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ALBUM REVIEW | ‘THE OTHER’
King Tuff ’s latest album ‘The Other’ sounds like no other By Ruben Paquian @rubenpaq
Kyle Thomas takes a leap into a new psychedelic folk genre with his latest King Tuff LP The Other. Through folk ballads and rock anthems, Thomas produces an album that echoes themes of redemption. Since the early 2000s, singer-songwriter Kyle Thomas has been making music both under his own name and the pseudonym King Tuff, but after the success of his stoner psych-rock LP Was Dead in 2008, Thomas retired his own identity and King Tuff began performing full time. After releasing two more similar albums, King Tuff in 2012 and Black Moon Spell in 2014, King Tuff’s latest LP
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The Other marks a shift in Thomas’ musical career from heavy rock ‘n’ roll to a hybrid of psych-folk pop rock. With a wide range of instruments providing unique sounds to lyrics that explore dense topics not done before in his earlier work, The Other comes as an exciting evolution for King Tuff’s sound and an enjoyable listen. Following two rock-based albums, the folk-influenced songs on The Other come as steep change to King Tuff’s sound, but his ability to blend this and his psych-rock roots makes the shift work. One of the more folk-heavy songs, “Thru the Cracks”, is a prime example of this. A violin intro and acoustic guitar rhythm paired with synth background ties the two genres seamlessly. “Infinite Mile”
accomplishes the same effect with the pairing of harmonicas and synth keys through the song. The Other features more psychedelic-based tunes as well. “Psycho Star” grooves with funky bass lines, keys and distorted guitars that anchor the album to the psych genre and sounds the most like King Tuff’s previous work. The attitude-filled psych “Raindrop Blue” follows suit. Distorted saxophone and vocals singing to catchy hooks provide a psych-pop anthem that is easy to move to. Many songs on The Other explore more serious themes, and from start to finish, a narrative of redemption can be found. The opening title
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The Monday, April 16, 2018 edition of The Daily Texan.