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Volume 66, No. 8


October 22, 2009

Sorber addresses presidential transition By Brian Silva




In his second question-and-answer session of the year, Interim President Charles Sorber discussed a range of issues with the Student Government Association Wednesday night. The most pressing topic addressed was recent development with the presidential search process. Sorber also answered queries on facility improvements and growth, also touching on the university’s freshly balanced budget. Sorber briefed the group on Robert Nelsen’s selection as the sole finalist for president. He noted that just be-

cause he is the only candidate doesn’t mean he’s got it, and that there is a 21day waiting period before he can be officially selected. But, Sorber appeared optimistic toward Nelsen’s hiring. “He will most likely be confirmed on Nov. 12,” Sorber said. “They can do it sooner, but they’re not going to call a special meeting just for that.” Sorber said that after Nelsen’s presidency is made official there will be a welcoming ceremony for him some time between the November meeting and his first official day in office. He said that at least one or two UT System Board of Regent members are to bring him to campus and introduce him. System officials have said that System Chancellor Francisco Cigarroa


and Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs David Pryor will also accompany the Regents in their welcome. “He’s probably going to assume his duties some time in January,” Sorber said. “I will stay with him through the better part of January, and I will serve as an adviser to him.” Sorber explained that he’ll serve as a transition advisor for Nelsen after he takes office, but that there will only be one president, Nelsen. Sorber would likely depart late in January, to return to retirement. Concerning advice for the next president, Sorber recommended he be as transparent as possible and not promise things that cannot be delivered. In speaking about his time in the

iWoz here



Apple co-founder talks tech


eight years while finishing the project. “I wanted to build my own computer and not have to sign up for a time slot on their computer (at HP),” he said. As a teacher Wozniak found that his students absorbed technology but he felt like tech learning needed to be incorporated more into the curriculum; he added that the inner workings of the computer are still not being taught at schools. “We don’t really necessarily teach things like programming, which I thought would become important now that the computer was the most prevalent academic tool,” Wozniak said.

See WOZNIAK || Page 6

See WRSC || Page 6

Hector J. Garcia/The Pan American

Go to for updates on this developing story.


Student recovering after rock wall fall Rolando Benavidez, 21, is now facing up to a year of labored recovery from a broken Talus bone in his ankle suffered in an incident Sept. 29, when he fell from the top of the rock wall at the University of Texas-Pan American’s Wellness and Recreation Sports Complex. The Corpus Christi native fell an estimated 30 feet, after an alleged equipment malfunction caused his harness to come loose. “I fell pretty much the whole way down,” Benavidez said. “I don’t remember hitting the ground. I remember falling and seeing the rope go up and coming out. I remember being on the ground and staring up at the wall. I had trouble breathing at first, I was just exhaling … then I finally caught my breath, so what ended up happening was the EMS came and took me to the emergency room. They put me on some morphine and had to put my ankle back in place.” He required surgery to repair his ankle and other broken bones, needing an “external fixator” (rods and pins to hold the bones in place) on his ankle. After surgery, more hardship was to come as he underwent a pulmonary embolism when a blood clot traveled up into his lungs causing breathing issues.


During last night’s meeting with student government, Interim President Charles Sorber mentioned that Gov. Rick Perry is tentatively scheduled to visit the university next week. According to other sources, Perry will likely visit on Wednesday. Though, a time and place have not been scheduled. Perry last visited the campus in 2002 when he delivered remarks about initiatives in higher education.

See SORBER|| Page 6

By Kevin Stich


Gov. Perry to visit campus

Valley, Sorber said he and his wife Linda have enjoyed their time here. “We’ve met all kinds of wonderful people here,” he insured. In regard to the university, Sorber said the institution is one of the finest in Texas, adding: “(What is) even better is that it has the potential to be great. We need to move this institution to the next level.” On his priority list for improving the campus are adding facilities and parking. “There are three building projects that are critical,” he outlined. “Renovating and redoing the Fine Arts Complex and music areas.” He said that $40 million will be

WIZARD OF WOZ - On Tuesday, Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple shares his life experiences and advice to a packed house at the Fine Arts Auditorium. By Ana Villaurutia Steve Wozniak had a humble beginning, from trying to create his own computer within the confines of his garage to creating the first personal computer and becoming the co-founder of Apple Computers Inc. His ascent was daring but he did not get to that position without relying on his own vision. Tuesday Wozniak employed his own twist on the Distinguished Speaker Series’ usual speech and question-and-answer format. He decided to have a panel of four students, each chosen by the DSS committee, ask questions about


his inventions and interests in education and technology. Wozniak, 59, spoke about how as a child he was inspired by his father, also an engineer, who patiently taught him the engineering behind certain technologies. Through these lessons Wozniak developed a love for engineering and education. “I told my father I wanted to be an engineer first and a teacher second,” he told the packed crowd at the Fine Arts Auditorium. In the early ‘70s, Wozniak was an engineer at Hewlett Packard out of Palo Alto, but he vowed to create his own computer. He taught fifth grade for




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October 15 , 2009


Air voyage unites America Ana Villaurrutia Assistant Editor Inside all of us is a balloon boy. Once in awhile America is united over an event that touches people’s hearts. Balloon Boy took people on a noble and frightening journey last week, but upon the balloon’s final destination the proverbial air went out, and the world was left in complete shock. It was the perfect time in the nation’s psyche for such a tale, as the country hotly anticipated the release of children’s-book-turned movie “Where the Wild Things Are.” As Falcon Heene supposedly ascended 7,000 feet in the air over Fort Collins, Col., along with him went everyone’s inner child and the yearning to join him. Soon everything would come out when CNN’s Wolf Blitzer interviewed the family last Thursday and the little boy was asked why he didn’t come out of hiding when he heard his family call him. “You guys said we did this for the show,” said the boy to his father, and the hoax was revealed. Even Blitzer didn’t seem to want to believe

Vol 66, No. 8

it as he barely acknowledged the boy’s response. But the backlash soon followed. There were some early sleuths who had already put the logistics together and guessed it was a farce, and simply for the heartless ones who didn’t care about a boy in a balloon. But for the others, it was all over after the interview and the media turned on the once-beloved Heene family. Questions abounded whether the whole ordeal was a scam cooked up by the boy’s fame-hungry (and let’s say it, very odd) parents. Father Richard Heene did one of the most annoying things the media can deal with Saturday when he made them submit their questions ahead of time. It was an ironic moment to see the father, who once welcomed the media into his family, transitioning from enjoying the limelight to squirming in the hot seat. The little boy would have been a hero, making his way through the talk show circuits and spending his 15 minutes of fame at age 6 like an early Amelia Earhart. Unfortunately I believe he has peaked after the incident, so to speak.

October 22 , 2009

Anthony Salinas/ The Pan American

Journalism’s essential change Brian Silva Editor in Chief

1201 West University, CAS 170 Edinburg, Texas 78539 Phone: (956) 381-2541 Fax: (956) 316-7122 EDITOR IN CHIEF Brian Silva / ASSISTANT EDITOR Ana Villaurrutia / VIDEO EDITOR Naxiely Lopez / ONLINE EDITOR Kristen Cabrera / ASSISTANT VIDEO EDITOR Victor Ituarte / A&L EDITOR Isaac Garcia / ASSISTANT A&L EDITOR Andrielle Figuerroa / SPORTS EDITOR Kevin Stich/ ASST. SPORTS EDITOR Sara Hernandez/ DESIGN EDITOR Gregorio Garza / SENIOR DESIGNER Roy Bazan / ADVISER Dr. Greg Selber / ADMINISTRATIVE ASSOCIATE Anita Reyes / ADVERTISING MANAGER Mariel Cantu/ WEBMASTER Jose Villarreal /

**Delivery** Thursday at noon The Pan American is the official student newspaper of The University of Texas-Pan American. Views presented are those of the writers and do not necessarily reflect those of the paper or university.

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR The Pan American accepts letters of 300 words or less from students, staff and faculty regarding recent newspaper content, campus concerns or current events. The Pan American reserves the right to edit submissions for grammar and length. The Pan American cannot publish anonymous letters or submissions containing hate speech or gratuitous personal attacks. Please send all story ideas to thepanamerican@ Individuals with disabilities wishing to acquire this publication in an alternative format or needing assistance to attend any event listed can contact The Pan American for more details.

The integrity of journalism is at risk of deteriorating. With the business advancing into a new era of different media, practitioners face the risk of morphing journalistic values. Further, young journalists have the opportunity to create new journalism values as they embark on the journey of digital journalism. Bear with them, however, because they may hit a few bumps in the road. Now, journalism has always been essential to the foundation of any democracy. That is the reason it is a private institution, a stance directly built into the Constitution. It is essential to provide the people with news of what their government is doing, without institutional oversight or interference as far as can be assured. The Romans did it via stone tablets to explain happenings in the Senate chambers. The Colonists in preRevolutionary America used the quill to explain the Crown’s actions to the general public. Some may find the transparency endemic to the watchdog process irritating. Certainly those who are in the public eye, and those who are perceived as having erred, don’t want to be portrayed negatively in the public sphere. The British took offense,

viewing the writers of expository articles, like Thomas Paine, as radicals, which as it turned out, they were. President Nixon wasn’t too favorable toward the Washington Post when Woodward and Bernstein presented their findings to the public in the mid1970s. If he’d had dictatorial control, stories about Watergate would have never been printed. The public would never have known. I note the issue of transparency because some at this university find journalists irritating. In fact, I’ve experienced a widespread lack of cooperation for simple things, like finding out an employee’s name. The university needs a stronger spirit of transparency and cooperation. If improved, it will enable young journalists to have an opportunity for better quality stories. Staff, faculty and administration need to understand that we’re learning, and at that we are doing it during a time when our career paths are changing. Help us learn and grow. On the issue of transition journalists have multiple avenues through which they can present their findings. And the quality of the information is sometimes debatable. The first medium to alter the print version of journalism was the formation of broadcast journalism; first via radio in the 1920s, and second through

television in the 1950s. I’m very fond of my broadcast friends, however, modern day TV news broadcasts do not allow for a sufficient amount of the story to be told. You get the what - what is happening or has happened - but there isn’t a lot of how or why. Presenting information to the public is crucial to full transparency, and this fare needs to be given in context, and with historical depth. Making a sound decision on world affairs requires understanding the holistic view. With the quick and dirty world of broadcast, this goal is not met frequently. Converting to the digital world presents a different sort of challenge. It is a place of unlimited space. Stories can run pages long or a few paragraphs. Too many journalists now rely on long-winded blogs to express their full view and feelings on any given situation. I think it is something that may infringe on individual value systems. Or at least alter them. Blogs must never be confused for actual news stories. Too many people rely on them as actual news sources, which is scary to think about. It is too easy to receive irrelevant and false information from these word-vomit sources. Be careful of what you read. And, help us along our way.

Dates to Know: President Bill Clinton at UTPA Oct. 22, 6:45 p.m. Fine Arts Auditorium October 22, 2009


Graduate and Professional School Fair Oct. 22, 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. University Ballroom More info: 381-2243 Page 3

Hike-and-bike trail to run around UTPA By Roxann Garcia If all goes well, students at The University of Texas-Pan American can expect a hike and bike trail to enjoy as early as next summer. “We began looking into ways of paying for the trail like grants, for example,” said Travis Hughes, assistant director for Wellness and Recreational Sports. “We want to spend as little of university funds as possible, therefore state money could really help us.” The university recently completed a Texas grant application through the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.

“What they like to see is trails and parks connect. We would like to connect our trail with Edinburg and McAllen in order to have a continuous trail,” Hughes said. As a former employee of TPW, Hughes knew of an old proposal for a trail that had been considered when the trails for 2nd Street and Bicentennial were constructed. The proposed trail began at the Edinburg Birding Center on the east side of town and passed through Freddy Gonzalez, Cenizo, and West Parks. The proposal was never passed but a new version of the proposal was suggested through the grant.

The routes for the campus trail have already been drawn up by John Edwards, vice president for enrollment and student services along with Hughes, and the Wellness Committee. Members include UPB and SGA student representatives with Hughes at the chair of the committee. Once the trail passes through West Park it would then connect with the university at University Drive and 5th Street, next to the bookstore. Then the plan is for it to pass along the front of campus on University Drive, onto Sugar Street, up Schunior, left on Jackson, back onto University, then west until finally reaching Mon

Mack Road. Hughes and city officials hope that once the trail is finished, plans would be drawn for another trail to run up toward Trenton in McAllen and finally connect with the trail on 2nd Street. “Originally when this idea came up, we thought about just doing a campus trail by ourselves. Kind of a loop around campus,” explained the director. “But the state doesn’t like loops. They like to see a connection; a way of bringing people to and from campus.” TPW officials prefer routes that pass through points of interest within cities, he added; if the trail runs by community buildings and schools, that is a plus on

the application. The department prefers for students to use the trail to and from campus, as opposed to driving. As for an update on the process, Hughes said, “We’ve already met several times with city officials from McAllen and Edinburg, the water district, drainage districts, and the county about the proposal. We’re trying to get everybody on board with this.” Regardless of the proposal’s success or failure, noted Hughes, the university would like to continue with the idea. If the TPW plan falls through, UTPA plans to apply for a TxDOT grant in order to receive funding.

See HIKE || Page 7

Donation funds UTPA breaking new ground new lab for COAS rooms. The lab will have four high-tech Elmo cameras, Dell PC’s and highly sensitive microphones hanging from the ceilings. Other uses for the lab include as a suite for graduate students who would otherwise not have an office area or place to work on their research. By Samantha Koch “Graduate teaching assistants support the teaching of lower division courses within the department while also purThough Margaret Hauser was born suing their graduate education,” said several states away from the Valley, the Mottet. “It’s a way to help graduate stuvisiting winter Texan from Kansas has dents defray some of the cost of their left an unforgettable tuition.” mark on The Uniare interested in A research area versity of Texas-Pan We for faculty and gradAmerican. uate students will understanding how a number of The Hauser be able to record Communication Re- different types of relationships naturally occurring search Lab, located conversations in the in Room 172 of the and communications that soundproof room College of Arts and and play back the these relationships recordings to show Sciences Building, unfolds was made possible the verbal and nonby now deceased impact behavior. verbal conversation Hauser and her husto better understand band Henry in 1989. how people are in“It’s important Timothy Mottet fluenced and perfor me to develop suaded. There are a Communications dept. chair programs that fulnumber of scholars fill Mrs. Hauser’s in the department wishes and desires…to help students in who are concerned how people interact their communication and social skills,” with each other. said Timothy Mottet, communications “We are interested in understanding department chair, who came to the uni- how a number of different types of reversity two years ago and is also the lationships and the communication that Henry W. and Margaret H. Hauser En- unfolds in these relationships impact bedowed Chair. havior,” said Mottet. “Some of the relaHauser was a high school speech and tionships that we’re interested in examdebate teacher with a passion to help stu- ining include doctor/patient, supervisor/ dents with their public speaking skills, subordinate, teacher/student, politician/ and she wanted to provide resources for citizens, etc.” those how had yet to come. The lab will be mainly used as a The donated funds were put into the speaking lab, Mottet said. The Hauser Hauser Endowment which provides lab is a place where students who need money for programming, travel and assistance on their presentation or speakresearch. ing skills for students will be able to turn The classroom-turned-lab on the first See HAUSER || Page 7 floor is soundproof and consists of three

Winter Texan funds lab upon her death

Alma Hernandez/The Pan American

REACHING NEW HEIGHTS - The University of Texas-Pan American held a ground breaking ceremony on Thursday, Oct. 15 to celebrate the new Upper-Level Center to be built in Starr County.

Construction on Starr County campus begins By Kristen Cabrera kristenmichellecabrera On Thursday Oct. 15, a good 50 miles from Edinburg, The University of TexasPan American broke ground for its new Starr County Upper-Level Center in Rio Grande City. UTPA has been a presence in Starr County since 2003 when it opened its doors offering undergraduate classes in education on the South Texas College Starr County Campus.

The original UTPA center consists of three portables and a computer lab for students. But once built the new 21,000-square-foot building will provide students in Starr County more accessibility of higher education along with smart classrooms, high-tech math, science and computer labs, and a resource center designed to aid master’s students. The center will be a boon to traditional and continuing students alike, mainly those who live and/or work off the beaten path. Brenda Trevino, a Roma native, graduated as a junior from Roma High School in 2002. Soon after, she enrolled at STC in Rio Grande City, but left after making other things her priority. “Before I realized it, I had stayed behind academically and stopped

attending college” said the 24-year-old senior. “At that moment I took life and education for granted.” She decided after giving birth to a daughter that she needed to return to school. “I realized that earning a degree was the only opportunity I had to provide a more fulfilling life to my daughter and be a good role model to her,” Trevino said. Once Trevino decided to revive her studies, she encountered the problems a non-traditional student usually does, such as juggling a job and family along with her education. “I came to the conclusion that if I wanted to resume my studies I was

See CEREMONY || Page 7

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October 22, 2009

WOZNIAK continued from Page 1 “Over time, teachers have become very familiar with computers so they’re [computers] becoming much better accepted in the classrooms.” During his time as a teacher, he developed the Apple 1 in 1976, the first in a line of computers that would lead to the advent of one of the most successful companies in the industry. Wozniak would continue with the Apple II, one of the best selling personal computers of the ‘70s and ‘80s, and the less successful Apple III. Apple Computer Inc., now Apple Inc., grew into a multinational corporation and topped Fortune’s top 20 list of American’s most admired companies. Wozniak also spoke about his upcoming projects including working as a chief scientist of flash memory product company Fusion-io and being on numerous advisory boards for technology companies. Though he is regarded as a technology icon, Wozniak said he never imagined the technologies we had today

during the early days of the computer revolution. “We never once imagined the sort of applications we have today, we never once imagined things like spread sheets,” he said. “I got to see the before and after.” However his final message was simple and echoed his success as an innovator. “Know yourself, know the passion that you have inside, and believe in doing,” he advised. “And don’t be afraid of taking other jobs in the meantime and work on other things in the meantime. In the end, try to get to do what you want and work on the big ideas that you have.” The DSS will continue with Dr. Alfredo-Quiñones Hinojosa, associate professor of neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins University, Nov. 17, broadcast journalist Lisa Ling Feb. 2, and author and Pulitzer Prize finalist Luis Alberto Urrea March 23.

WRSC continued from Page 1 As of now, there are no lawsuits being The WRSC does face an internal filed by the victim or his family, and there review, and although it is not a formal was a waiver signed before the incident review the day-to-day policies will be expunging the center of liability. The se- reassessed. Those things include connior nursing major was forced to take a tacting other facilities for consultation medical withdrawal from the university. on proper safety practices, and employee Travis Hughes, interim director of the retraining. WRSC, said that there had been approxi“Any time there’s an accident it’s mately 40,000 climbs without an acci- scrutinized by University Police Departdent, and claimed that it [the Benavidez ment, environmental health and safety, incident] was not a result of negligence. our bosses, the vice president, they’re all “I wouldn’t use going to want to know that word (negliwhat happened and was an unfortunate what can be done to gence),” Hughes It said. “Nothsomething like situation...We don’t want them prevent ing snapped, the that from happening equipment didn’t to happen, but it’s hard to in the future,” Hughes break; there may said. “It was an unforhave been a pos- completely erase the possibility tunate situation; acsibility that a knot cidents unfortunately was not properly of having an accident occur. happen. We don’t want tied. That’s the them to happen, but only conclusion it’s hard to completely that we could erase the possibility of Travis Hughes reach after we having an accident oclooked at the inci- Interim director for WRSC cur.” dent.” The interim direcEduardo Regalado, a staff member tor said that staffers answered the necwho works at the rock wall, was the essary questions and shut the wall down “belayer,” or person supervising on the for two days before reopening it. Some ground, according to Benavidez. Hughes of the questions they had to answer inexplained that the staff member was in cluded about staff training and regular control of the rope at all times. precautions. However, the victim said that he felt Benavidez spent 10 days in the hosRegalado was not paying attention dur- pital, eventually having to pay for transing the climb. fer from McAllen Medical Center to the “Well, the only thing that makes San Antonio Orthopaedic Group Center. sense is that it was negligence,” he said. He eventually received treatment from “When they tie you, when they put the his family practitioner, Dr. David Sutrope on your harness, they are supposed ter in Corpus Christi, after what he calls to tie a figure-eight knot. The only way I “bad experiences” in McAllen and San know that my rope could have come out Antonio. He said the staff was apathetic of my harness is that the rope wasn’t tied in administering painkillers and blood properly. thinners. “Even before I started climbing he His rehabilitation will be broken up (Eduardo) was playing rock-paper-scis- into two six-month sessions. The first sors with another guy from the gym be- six months require Benavidez to put no fore he tied me up. I’m not a ‘belayer’ so pressure on his foot; the second will be I don’t know if he tied my knot correctly for physical therapy. or not, I just saw him tie something. I “Honestly I’m scared for people who don’t remember him pulling my slack rock climb because it could happen to as I climbed. I mean I wasn’t looking at anyone of them,” Benavidez said. “It him, so maybe he did, but even if he did, could have happened to any one of my I would’ve fallen and I would have at friends. I don’t want anyone else to go least stopped at the bottom.” through what I’m going through.” UTPA did contact Benavidez to inHe said that he would like to return form him that he had the option of using to school, but when is still uncertain. For the university’s insurance provided in now, he is trying to recover. cases like his.

Hector J. Garcia/The Pan American

IWOZ - (Above) Steve Wozniak answers questions from a panel of students at the Fine Arts Auditorium for the kickoff of the Distinguished Speaker Series as communcation department chair Timothy Mottet moderates. (Right) Wozniak snaps a picture as the audience welcomes the innovator of Apple computers.

Next Speakers in the Series Nov. 17: Dr. Alfredo-Quiñones Hinojosa, associate professor of neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins University Feb. 2: Broadcast Journalist Lisa Ling March 23: Pulitzer Prize finalist Luis Alberto Urrea Hector J. Garcia/The Pan American

SORBER continued from Page 1 spent to renovate the Fine Arts Auditorium. During the most recent Legislative session the university vied for additional funds to build a new performing arts complex between Jackson and Sugar roads, north of University drive. $50 million had been awarded to the university from the session, but the cost has been reassessed at $70 million. The additional $20 million was not awarded. Under the Capitol Improvement Program, Sorber said the science and business buildings are top priority for renovations and additions. He said the science facility, though one of the newest on campus, is lacking adequate equipment and lab space; the business building needs more faculty office space. Looking toward future growth,

Sorber talked about the need to build outside the campus block. “We’re going to have to figure out how to move north and west,” he said. The university has been collecting residential properties north of the campus for several years in its bid to expand northward. When asked about the remaining unbought houses, Sorber said the UT System “does not invoke eminent domain if it can be avoided.” “It would be very unusual for the university to exert that policy.” When asked about the proposal to expand the Student Union, Sorber stepped back from offering comment. He said that it’s a student issue, and they will have the opportunity to decide on it. When asked about some of the

biggest improvements during his tenure as UTPA’s top boss, Sorber emphasized the balanced budget. The budget has run in the red for the past five years, but this year, a series of widespread cost avoidance measures were implemented by Sorber. In June Sorber declared that UTPA would have a balanced budget within the year. “We were conservative during budgeting, which will give us some room,” he said. Sorber also said the athletics area has seen significant improvement, and touted the hiring of the new “bright and enthusiastic” athletic director, Chris King. “I think we’ve made some great strides in athletics,” he said.

October 22, 2009

HIKE continued from Page 3 “As part of the application process, grant programs require a certain amount of funds that we have to put in as well,” Hughes explained. “They want to see a percentage of project costs, maybe 20 percent. It all depends on how big the trail will be.” The university is willing to set aside an estimate of $100,000 just to get things started and match funds for the grants already applied for. “This is still the preliminary planning stage,” Hughes noted. “We have spoken with professionals to get drawings done and have set aside some money to potentially start in the summer, just to show how serious Pan Am is about this project.” The trail will be open to everyone, giving the public a chance to walk or run by campus and see what the university is about. It will also be easier for

students to bike or run from opposite ends of the campus. “The exercise possibility is what we’re excited about, as well. The Wellness Center could use the trail for 5K runs and races,” explained the director. “The kinesiology department could also use it for PE classes or the cross country team also.” The proposed trail with the city would be about 18 miles long. Along the university there would be benches, water fountains, and the possibility for two kinds of trails. One trail would be made of concrete and the other would be fashioned from a rocky substance commonly used on trails. The reason for this, noted Hughes, is that the rocky kind of trail can be slippery for bike riders, roller bladers or skateboarders.


CEREMONY continued from Page 3 going to need to work and attend college and tend to my family all at the same time…and I did,” she recalled. In spring 2006 Trevino went back to college, eventually earning an associate’s degree in the summer of 2007 from STC in Starr County. Later that year she enrolled in UTPA Starr County Upper-Level Center where she took classes on the STC Campus. The current UTPA center offers basic undergraduate courses as well as specific courses in education and criminal justice, and master’s-level courses in education. Trevino utilized these opportunities and with support from her family will graduate in December 2009 with a bachelor’s in interdisciplinary studies and minor in bilingual education.

“It has been difficult for me but with my family’s support, faith, and UTPA being so close to home, I have been able to manage my time and fulfill my dreams of becoming an educator,” she said. Interim President Dr. Charles A. Sorber said that the new facility is all part of the University’s plan of outreach throughout the Valley. “It’s part of our strategy to provide an educational opportunity to all the people of the region if we can,” he said. “And because STC is here it’s a logical place to do upper-division work and have a larger facility in which to do it.” Dr. Paul Sale, provost and vice president of academic affairs, reiterated UTPA’s plan for the western part of the Valley. “What this does is it helps UTPA

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achieve its regional mission to give more education opportunities for students,” he said. “We hope that it will spark up some additional economic development and that this can become a center for new opportunities for citizens in Rio Grande City and surrounding communities.” Trevino understands first-hand that the proximity of the new site will help to get students to take advantage of opportunities provided by the university. “I believe many individuals from Starr County are going to be coming back to gain their education now that it’s close to home,” she predicted. “I know many individuals that have stopped coming because of that and because of a financial crisis. But being close to home, there’s no excuse anymore.”

HAUSER continued from Page 3 to. Students can make 30-minute appointments there with a trained “communication coach,” or graduate student working in the lab, who will help the student perfect their public speaking skills. During an appointment a student delivers a presentation or speech, which will be recorded and played back. At the end of the presentation the communication coach goes over the strengths and weaknesses in the presentation and how to improve. With the feedback the student will then present again. Lab operations are still in process but Mottet would like to see the lab to be staffed for at least eight hours per day. Though it is a research lab, Mottet stresses it is for everyone in the commu-

nication department. “The lab is used to work with students to demonstrate when they enter in communications and leave with a degree, to rate the significant shift of development in their skill sets and enhance understanding of communications,” Mottet said. Whether that be in print, theater, advertising, public relations; it’s for all students, whatever specialization.” Broadcast major Annabel Allen was glad to hear of the lab and hopes it will be a good resource; she also hopes the department advertises the new room. “I think the lab is a great idea, because it’ll help communication majors to see what their strong and weak points are when it comes to presentations,” said

the Annabel Allen, 21, broadcast student. “But they need to make sure people know about the resource available to them.” Mottet is hoping for a grand opening some time next month and is trying to get a lab grant funded to financially support the lab, help with extending lab hours, and eventually open the lab to the whole campus. “People are judged by their speaking skills. If you’re brilliant but cannot convey your brilliance to others due to poor social skills, you’re going to be less effective,” said Mottet. Both Mottet and Margaret are/were interested in helping students. Helping them discover and develop their voices hoping to influence positive changes.

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Hector J. Garcia/The Pan American


Alma Hernandez/The Pan American

Hector J. Garcia/The Pan American

Daniel Flores/The Pan American

October 22, 2009

The tradition continues. UTPA celebrated the start of the basketball season and the end of the ninth annual spirit week festivals at this year’s Midnight Madness, where diehard Bronc fans gathered to welcome the men and women’s basketball teams. The evening started with a tailgate party in the Field House parking lot. Students, faculty and staff witnessed the igniting of the UTPA letters, which seemed to fill the

October 22, 2009

crowd with school spirit and got it going for the show about to happen. Throughout the night, student organizations presented dance numbers that prepared the spectators for the first official practice of the basketball teams at midnight; the Broncs and Lady Broncs exhibited their basketball abilities and concluded the celebration with an energetic demonstration that Bronc spirit is way more than a ball game.


Alma Hernandez/The Pan American

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Daniel Flores/The Pan American

Alma Hernandez/The Pan American

Alma Hernandez/The Pan American

Dates to Know: Salsa band concert Oct. 27, 7:30 p.m. Fine Arts Auditorium Page 10


Fashion Show Tonight, 9 p.m. Martini’s, Pharr October 22, 2009

Goodbar Productions makes big bang with Cursive By Andrielle Figueroa

Concerts are seen as a wonderful experience for those young or old. Yet people of the Valley have always had the idea drilled into their brains, that the South Texas area is not the place for big events like those found in cities like Austin or New York. Supposedly, artists (at least not talented ones) would never step foot into this “poor” and “uneventful” area. The Valley is slowly but surely putting the wheels into motion, though, by changing downtown McAllen into a mini version of Austin’s Sixth. Now that there are places available and the need for bigger and better things, there are locals hard at work getting the events they feel the Valley was long overdue for. Goodbar Productions is composed of duo Patrick Garcia and Sam Martinez. The duo first started setting up shows in 2006 and has since put huge names on their resume. One is the indie band Cursive, which they are bringing down Nov. 29.

Cursive started in 1995, and has released seven albums. The group is known for hits like “Art is Hard,” “Big Bang,” and “From the Hips.” Their latest effort “Mama, I’m Swollen,” was dropped on March 10. Their fall tour will kick off Oct. 26 in Tokyo, Japan. Goodbar admits there was some difficulty in bagging such a popular band. “When we drove up to meet Cursive in San Antonio this past March the band didn’t even know McAllen, Texas existed, much less considered it as a possibility for a tour stop,” Matinez said. Goodbar explained further that they used the band’s free time to build a following. By working with big names and their respective agents, the tandem proved to Cursive they could handle them and that the Valley presented a reasonable market for the show. Will their hard work pay off? Cursive is undoubtedly popular but may not cater to a mainstream sound that most music listeners have an ear for. “We’ve been trying to educate artists and booking agents associated with them that the Valley actually does have

an untapped market for indie shows,” Martinez continued, “So I think many people down here are already taken with Cursive; too many people down here have been waiting for this.” Another plus in bringing these known names down is that local bands have the chance to open up for them. “Incorporating the local scene into these shows with touring bands is something we’ve always tried to do, no matter how big or small he show,” Garcia stated. “Without the local scene we wouldn’t be here.” Aside from Cursive, Goodbar has other events coming up. A punk rock show on Nov. 6 with Off With Their Heads, who recently came off tour with Against Me!, will be held at the Incubator in downtown McAllen. Closely after that, on Nov. 23, pop punk band New Found Glory will also be performing at Cine El Rey. To purchase Cursive tickets, fans can go online at To find information on shows and other vendors, visit goodbarlovesyou.

BAND MEMBERS - Matt Maginn (bass), Tim Kasher (vocals/ guitar), and Ted Stevins (vocals/guitar).

New music releases for October hit the airwaves, shops

By Veronica Gonzalez DEAD MAN’S BONES

‘Tis the season for spooks and gouls. But for Ryan Gosling, star of “The Notebook” (Yes, that notebook) and friend Zach Shields, the duo who call themselves Dead Man’s Bones, are admitted addicts of the supernatural (and Disney’s legendary Haunted Mansion ride). Their selftitled debut album hit stores Oct. 6 with no intentions of making it just for the annual Oct. 31 festivities. It started out as a musical project by two non-musicians who were obsessed with the idea of a monster

love story. They began writing and rehearsing songs, with an imaginary kids’ choir in mind and the duo would sing in between the choral. Eventually L.A.’s Silverlake Conservatory Children’s Choir was picked and they went on from there. While using a children’s choir to scream out their choruses, “Intro” kicks off with some gloomy thunderstorm ambience and spoken vows. The album keeps that same gloomy tone throughout. “Dead Hearts” plays against a thumpingheart beat that gradually accelerates to a panicked horror-film pounding, and “In the Room Where You Sleep” has an organ accompanied by a chorus of syncopated hand claps.


The Frames lead singer, Glen Hansard, and Czech singer Marketa Irglova - otherwise known as The Swell Season - join Tegan and Sara on the 27th for the former’s release of “Strict Joy.” Since the success of 2007’s “Once,” The Swell Season has become highly regarded members of the Irish music scene. Acousitc guitars, pianos and strings make up the flavor of brooding ballads. Hansard offsets the gloom by throwing in a heaping of emotion every now and then. In “Feeling the Pull,” he sings about the stress of being boxed in by reality, while Irglova fills

in with gentle harmonizing vocals, as she does on the majority of the album. Irglova has a chance to steal the spotlight on “Fantasy Man,” and “I Have Loved You Wrong.” TEGAN AND SARA

It’s been two years since their last release, but Tegan and Sara have managed to bring about another album. This time, their sixth studio album, “Sainthood,” delves into themes of devotion, delusion, love and, of course, relationships—specifically their parents’ divorce and Sara’s long-term relationship. “Sainthood” explores the hope of

being rewarded with adoration, and was inspired by Leonard Cohen’s “Came So Far for Beauty.” Intertwined with the typical obsession with romantic ideals is the twins’ signature acoustic sound, with a variation of mellow and upbeat songs. It’s a first pick for listening while driving to unwind. Tegan stuck with the more traditionally structured tracks, while Sara offered some of the more wild sounds like the opening song, “Arrow,” a sputtering, nervy plea for tough love. The twins teamed up with Death Cab for Cutie’s Chris Walla and Howard Redekopp to produce the album, set to release Oct. 27. U.S. fans will get a chance to see the girls live on tour in February, March and April 2010.

October 22, 2009


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Vision Gallery to host first show Uruguayan pianist will Event will feature a variety of music, fashion, and body art

“We have been friends for about nine years, and we both have always enjoyed art and design,” Johnson said. “Since we were in high school we’ve always been involved in our separate design projects and recently we decided to join forces.” By Isaac Garcia So what exactly is Vision Gallery? Well, it’s an art, fashion and interior Fashion, models and art, oh, my! design firm that focuses mainly on For people fashionably inclined fashion. or not, two local fashionistas are “Vision Couture is the fashion throwing their first fashion show, design section run by the both of abundant with live music and drink us,” Johnson said. “We have been specials in hopes of attracting involved with art, fashion and design people. all our lives, but recently we have Tonight Vision taken it to the next Gallery will host level by starting Vision Couture, It’s about people getting Vision Gallery.” a fashion show in Mostly selfPharr at Martini’s together, loving art, and taught, Guzman located on 495 and having a good time. We hope and Johnson have I roads. The event managed to start a will kick off at 9 everyone walks away inspired design and fashion p.m. and will have firm and are very not have a cover and feeling good. satisfied with the charge. products that will Hosted by be showcased Vision Gallery on the runway business partners Kristy Johnson tonight. Marisa Guzman, Vision Gallery “The show 24, and Christy will feature Johnson, 23, two categories the event will including men’s showcase a variety to please every and women’s casual wear and pallet. women’s semi-formal wear,” Both are Mission natives who Guzman said. have been inspired by the arts since Special themes include 1930s childhood and have been working on throwbacks and live art. the gallery for some time. “Our newest line Artwear is a

walking art gallery featuring real art by real artists,” Guzman said. “And Vision Couture features women’s evening wear that is inspired by 1930s and 1940s Hollywood glamour, modernized.” The design duo is excited about the live art segment of the show. “This is always an exciting and unique addition to an event. It can be artistic and elegant as well as playful and fun,” Guzman said. The segment is expected to interest the audience and a plan of action is already set to facilitate interactivity. “Along with the numerous prepainted models who will be walking around and greeting people throughout the event,” Guzman explained, “there will be a live body painting session, where attendees can watch the magic happen firsthand from start to finish.” Of course, no fashion event is complete without a DJ spinning the night away and tonight is no exception as friend and local musician RAEN will be playing some funky beats according to Guzman. The Vision Gallery completed its one-year anniversary this month, and the duo remains very ambitious about the night. “Our goal for tonight, is to introduce Vision Couture,” Johnson said. “It’s about people getting together, loving art, and having a good time. We hope everyone walks away inspired and feeling good.”

open local concert season By Victor Ituarte Beginning Saturday, Oct. 24, music enthusiasts can bask in a chamber concert music series hosted by the Rio Grande Foundation for the Performing Arts (RGFPA). Pianist Edison Quintana from Uruguay will perform at the Valley Keyboards Recital Hall located at 900 Harvey St. in McAllen. Francisco Rocafuerte, vice president of RGFPA, says the goal of the series is to bring more cultural events and international artists to McAllen. The first performer will be Quintana, who is familiar to the VP. “I studied with Mr. Quintana a long time ago in Mexico City,” Rocafuerte said. “Mr. Quintana works with the Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes in Mexico City. He’s a very fabulous pianist. I think it’s a great opportunity for the Valley to listen to this great artist.” Each year, Quintana plays around 120 concerts on five continents, according to Rocafuerte. “He’s more into a romantic and contemporary style of music, and of course Latin-American composers’ works because he’s from Uruguay,” he said of Quintana’s style. “He plays more classical romantic composers such as Frédéric Chopin, Robert Schumann and Sergei Rachmaninov.” Quintana will be performing works by Bach, Chopin, and Beethoven for the recital.

“He played a concert at the Juilliard School in New York, another concert with the Mexican National Opera,” Rocafuerte said about the 70-year-old pianist. “The first concert we want to do is at Valley Keyboards because they have a wonderful piano.” The series schedule calls for nine shows through May 22, 2010. Future concerts will take place at other venues like Our Lady of Sorrows School in McAllen, the McAllen Civic Center, and maybe one at The University of Texas-Pan American. Peter Dabrowski, assistant dean for the College of Arts and Humanities and also a well-known conductor of music, says that as long as there is space and time available, the university would be happy to be a part of it. “It’s an opportunity for students and community to enjoy the quality of artists the series offers,” Dabrowski said. “Having somebody from outside performing would always enhance the quality of students’ education. If they could, besides playing the concert or playing a recital, they could offer a master class for our students. That would be also very educational.” The price for the recital is $15 for general admission and $10 for any students with school ID.

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October 22, 2009

Locals celebrate ribbon-cutting, look back at Chicano history By Nadia Tamez-Robledo SAN BENITO – It was in an 8x10 foot room on the second floor an insurance office in downtown San Benito that the patrons of the Narciso Martinez Cultural Arts Center celebrated its ribbon cutting with dance that would kick off 18 years of music and art. Though the center at 101 S. Sam Houston St. opened its doors in 1991, the road to its creation began in 1970 when founder Rogelio Nuñez left his hometown of San Benito to attend college at Texas A&I University in Kingsville. At what is now The University of Texas A&M-Kingsville, Nuñez became active in the Chicano Rights Movement at the school, the core of which began in 1965 when Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers Organizing Committee led a strike in the grape fields of California. “It was a small university, but it was one of the hotbeds for Chicano politics,” the 57-year-old said. “I began to think that was something I wanted to do, change the world to be a better world for us Chicanos, Mexican Americans.” He enrolled in an ethnic studies class, which he said was “an eye-opener” for him about the role of Chicanos in history. “That was like turning me 360 degrees,” he recalled. “Our history was not there, if it was we were always savages, we were always bad people and bandits, and you can still see some of that today.” All around him Nuñez saw the flourishing of a “cultural renaissance” that accompanied the political movement. “All of a sudden there was this major birth of the arts, poetry, all the paintings you can think of but with a very strong, emerging, identifiable Chicano identity,” he said. Chicano refers to those who were active in the Chicano Rights Movement, a time during which people of Mexican and Latin American descent began to organize in order to lobby for rights and fight against discrimination. Though only a relatively small percentage of people actually self-identified as such, the Chicanos had an impact beyond their numbers. While Nuñez was working on his undergraduate degree, co-founder of the NMCAC was finishing his biology degree at Our Lady of the Lake University in San Antonio where he, too, had become involved in the Civil Rights Movement. “I don’t understand exactly how, but civil rights and arts go together, and of course most of the people involved in civil rights are the not the ordinary people,” the Harlingen native recalled of the people he knew in the activist scene. “They have different ideas; they see the world a little differently. They’re poets, they’re writers, they’re visual artists, they’re artists of all kinds. You could even tell by the way we dressed. Our hair was longer, our dress was flashier, we were more colorful, if you will.” While living in San Antonio, Ramon De Leon published an underground newspaper, the name of which has faded from his memory. It featured prose and poetry from the area as well as articles on civil rights issues. “It’s a very loose use of the word publishing because it was a home type

of publishing,” he said. “Since there was no word processing, you’d get a type writer and an eraser and you’d write our stories or poetry or whatever, and if you were going to include some artwork or photographs, you had to count the number of letters and spaces that you had so you could line it up. It was very, very crude.” De Leon graduated in 1973 and moved to Tennessee to study dentistry.

bass sound,” said the Brownsville native, who worked with the center from 20042008. “It became a very harmonious sound, so now the two instruments were needed to play together. That’s how it became a conjunto, a group.” Conjunto was distinguished early on from norteño music because it was instrumental. Norteño music, however, was known for producing traditional corridos, or ballads, De Leon said. BALLÉ - NMCAC celebrates 10th year anniversary of Taquachito Nights at the 17th Annual Narciso Martinez Conjunto Festival. Nuñez completed his undergraduate and master’s degrees and moved to the University of Texas at Austin in 1978 where began working on his doctorate in political science. He was impressed by the Center of Mexican American Studies that had been founded by professor Americo Paredes, a Brownsville native and border author who wrote “With His Pistol in His Hand: A Border Ballad and its Hero.” “And then you had some of the best Mexican-American Studies professors ever in the country [like] Jose Limon, Emilio Zamora, all these scholars teaching Chicano history, Chicano politics, and you could get a major in it,” he recalled. Limon is a student of Paredes and current director the Center of Mexican American Studies. Zamora is known for his research on labor history. Nuñez returned to the Valley in 1983 and experimented with a conjunto festival two years later on the weekend of Mexican Independence Day; the event showcased the traditional style of Mexican American music that was pioneered by Narciso Martinez of San Benito in the 1930s. One of the defining characteristics of conjunto music is the fact that it relies on both the accordion and the bajo sexto, a 12-string guitar, to create its sound. Born in Reynosa, Martinez became exposed to the accordion when his family migrated to the Robstown area to work the cotton fields, where he met German and Czech musicians. It was his exceptional speed in playing the treble keys that paved the way for the birth of conjunto, said former NMCAC Director Christina Balli. “In deemphasizing the bass notes, it allowed the bajo sexto to pick up the

The initial attempt at a festival failed to continue when Nuñez began commuting to Edinburg after being hired as a lecturer at Pan American University in 1986. He advocated the formation of a Mexican-American Studies department at PAU, where he saw a noticeable absence of academic opportunities to study the cultural heritage shared by the majority of the student body. “I’d been everywhere else like [the University of Southern California], Berkley, UT Austin, all these places where they’re so far removed from the border, whose population of Chicanos is very little, [yet] they had Chicano studies programs,” he said. “And here where we’re 99 percent Chicano, we don’t have anything.” Nuñez succeeded getting one of his biggest influences to speak at the university, including a noted guest. Former president of La Raza Unida Party Jose Angel Gutierrez came to campus. “I had raised a little bit of a storm in saying, ‘This is what’s necessary here,’” he said. “Students were beginning to be turned on to that.” After three years of teaching, his contract with the university was not renewed, and Nuñez returned to San Benito unemployed. “I wasn’t renewed on a contract because Pan American was, in my estimation, not ready for this whole idea of Chicano history, Chicano culture, sort of teaching and advocating and working on a Chicano agenda for the university,” he said. STARTING FROM THE BOTTOM Without the burden of his daily commute, Nuñez began to focus his energy on creating a venue where Chicano artistic culture could take root

“It’s also a venue where we’re seeing and grow. “There wasn’t any, and I think that’s a generation of folks who grew up very critical, there wasn’t anything here with that music fading away into the in the Valley that had to do with Chicano sunset. We’ve seen people pushing their little walkers just to hear it one more art or displaying it anywhere,” he said. time.” “Not there weren’t any artists.” Advancing age may change the Nuñez felt he would need the backing of someone in local government to make scheduled line-up, according to De Leon. “We may have two cancellations this his idea happen. He had come to respect San Benito school board member David year because of that!” he added with a Garza’s attitude toward community laugh. In addition to Martinez, notable past development and approached him in performers include Valerio Longoria, September 1990. “I always felt that David was a who is credited with introducing vocals good human being, very practical,” he to the music, and Oscar Hernandez, explained. “I went and picked up some considered to be a master of conjuntobeer, went over to David’s house and style accordion music. said, ‘I have this idea, and all I’m asking Two of this year’s scheduled is for your support.’” performers are in their 80s. Garza agreed to lend his backing for “They want to and they still can [play,] the creation of what would become the but they’re ill,” Nuñez said. “I’m not Narciso Martinez Cultural Arts Center. saying that they’re dying right now, but we In order to make sure Nuñez had help think it’s important to bring them back.” developing his project, Garza introduced Now the program director for Texas him to De Leon, who was a local dentist Folklife Resources in Austin, Balli and had been a fan of conjunto music recalled when she first heard about the from an early age. center in 2002 after moving back from “[My parents’] entertainment was San Antonio in 1991. dancing. They went to the bailas every “I couldn’t believe there was weekend, and I would go with them and something like that in the Valley, and I sit around and just look,” De Leon said. immediately fell in love with the place,” “You get all that music coming into your she said, adding that she quickly became brain constantly, and I think that’s what a regular at the events. really got me going.” Like the people who love it, Balli Before perpetrations to open the said the festival itself has stayed true to center were complete, Nuñez knew that its roots over the years. he wanted to name it after someone “What keeps it unique is that [Rogelio who was a symbol in the community and Ramon] keep it a point to play the of Chicano artistry. When Nuñez old music, so you really get as close approached Martinez about naming the to the original music as you can,” she center after him, the musician responded said. “It feels like you’re at your uncle’s with, “Lo que tu quieres,” “Whatever backyard barbeque with a thousand you want.” other people. That’s part of the beauty “He saw somebody of very humble of Valley and border culture, that very beginning and who was a very humble warm, nostalgic feeling.” man celebrated at that time nationally For De Leon, the history and culture but very poorly recognized locally,” behind the music are as important as the De Leon said of music itself. Nuñez’s choice. This is our history that was “This is our The Center history that was opened its doors on suppressed for so many years. suppressed for so Oct. 29, 1991 at 7 many years. My p.m. The event was My family has been here for at family has been here a dual celebration for at least six or of the ribbon- least six or seven generations. seven generations, cutting and the aqui en los estados 80th birthday of the unidos, but we center’s namesake. Ramon De Leon weren’t Americans,” Nuñez was under he stressed. “We instruction by Co-founder of NMCAC were deprived of Martinez’s wife to our culture, our have him home at a foods, our music and reasonable hour. deprivation in the sense that it wasn’t “It was one if those things where accepted as legitimate culture.” we were lucky enough to name a place Like his partner in crime, De Leon feels after a person that was still alive,” Nuñez passionate about the discrimination against said of Martinez, who passed away in Hispanics he has witnessed in his life. 1992. “We were in that one room, it was “Folks right now need to realize packed, no air-condition, Narciso played that there were people who did a lot of like nobody else’s business and he had a things, Jose Angel Gutierrez and all hell of a good time.” these guys, and they were beaten up, and some were killed trying to get something IN THE BOOKS really basic: human rights,” he said. Eighteen years after that initial “Recognize me for who I am. That’s all evening of music, the center and the I’m asking for.” festival have grown. Relocated to the The Narciso Martinez Cultural Arts old public library building in 2002, the Center is now cemented as part of American music celebration has become a three- history. In 1999, the Smithsonian Museum day festival that draws crowds of 3,000- published a collection of regional conjunto 4,000. This year’s events will kick off songs that included a brief history of the year on Oct. 23. style of music. “The festival for me is like a reunion “The music is part of our identity,” of folks. People are calling me from De Leon said. “This is who we are, the California, Illinois, from upper parts of music is very representative of the type Texas because they plan their vacation of people we are, and to ignore it, you around the festival,” Nuñez noted. are ignoring your own identity.”

October 22, 2009


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Date to Know:

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Time to put the ‘Boys out to pasture By Gregorio Garza In Texas, American football is king, there can be no dispute about that. Texans follow the sport with a religious fervor, from high school football to the professional leagues. Come game day, many people can be seen wearing their favorite team’s jersey. And while there are two professional clubs to choose from: Dallas Cowboys and Houston Texans, there is really only one clear choice. The Dallas Cowboys. Or as they are called: American’s Team. But the question is, do they still deserve to hold that moniker. There is no doubt that when they were graced by it, they did deserve it. Sadly, that is not the case now. When I was growing up, the Cowboys were undisputed. They had the greats like Emmitt Smith, Troy Aikman and Michael Irvin. People worshiped them and wanted to be like them. This was a team that deserved the title. Yet all good things must come to an end. The coach at the time, Jimmy Johnson, resigned and the ’Boys picked up Barry Switzer as their new commander. In his time at the reins, Switzer managed to go to the Super Bowl once and win 1996 as the Cowboys beat the Steelers 27-17. Then the bottom kind of fell out as scandals and injuries plagued the team in 1996. Irvin was convicted of narcotics possession and accused of sexually assaulting a woman (later proved false). Leon Lett, already somewhat of a screwup, failed to pass a drug test and was suspended for one year. Jay Novacek, Charles Haley and Smith all suffered from injuries that took their toll on the team, resulting in some disappointing losses. The name of the Cowboys began to get smeared. No longer were these athletes people to idolize. These were not the role models we were led to believe they were. The wool was finally pulled from our eyes. After their last Super Bowl win in 1996, the ‘Boys have never able to get back to the top. They have came close but something always holds them back. The Cowboys have made recent headlines in the past few years with Tony Romo, yet most of them focused not on his time on the field of battle but his time on the field of love; he was romantically linked to singer Jessica Simpson and the news was whether or not she was affecting his play. The Cowboys have now fallen from sport idols to mere pop idols, with roves of fan girls brandishing signs one more normally associates with boy bands. This is not America’s Team. It is time they either rise up to earn it once again or pass it on to another team, one that deserves the title and can live up to it. Without getting too nationalistic, the unit called America’s Team should be the one who shows the strength of the country. Not one that showcases scandals and boy toys.

Bronc Cycling Team

Men’s Golf

Bike Masters 42-mile Road Race Oct. 24, 7:30 a.m. Granjeno

Husky Invitational Oct. 25 Missouri City October 22, 2009


Lady Broncs break five-game losing streak By Benny Salinas After a five-game losing streak, the Lady Bronc’s Volleyball team was able to step back into the winners circle during a two game road trip, facing off against the Utah Valley Lady Wolverines on Oct.15 and Chicago State on Oct. 17. After losing to Utah, the second ranked team in the Great West Conference, in a 3-1 decision, the Lady Broncs proved victorious at Chicago State, sweeping the game 3-0. “We did really well in Chicago. We handled the ball well and stayed focused,” said head coach Angela Hubbard. “We knew we had to we’d have to bring both elements of the game, defense and offense.” Prior to the game in Chicago, the team had lost the last five games they played, including hard fought losses against North and South Dakota in three sets at the UTPA Field House, as well as three-set losses to Houston Baptist and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi. Despite another loss against Utah, the Broncs remained positive about their performance. “I felt good about the Utah game. We knew we’d have to be good; they’re the second best team in the conference,” said Hubbard. “The girls fought hard, played really good defense and mixed the shots up well.” After losing the first two sets of the Utah game (14-25, 17-25), the Lady Broncs came back in the third set, going up 10-2 to start the set, eventually winning 25-21. The Wolverines came back during the fourth set, however, finishing off the set and match 18-25.

Hector J. Garcia/The Pan American

HURRAH - The Lady Bronc defeated Chicago State to snap the five-game losing streak that plagued them. The team’s last win was against the Cougars Sept. 26. UTPA’s fortunes would change during their game in Chicago. After starting the match on a 9-0 run, the Lady Broncs went on to win the game in three sets, 25-16, 25-19 and 25-18, handing Chicago State another loss, extending their opponent’s 18-game losing streak. “Although we could have done a little better defensively the girls played well. We were spreading the ball out and mixing up the shots,” said Hubbard, who is

currently in her third season at UTPA. “Marci played an almost perfect game and Ariana did really well also.” In Chicago, junior outside hitter Marci Logan played an error free game with 12 kills, accumulating a .571 hitting percentage. Junior setter Ariana Burmea and senior libero Rebecca Toddy both picked up double digit digs, 16 and 12 respectively. Assists were led by junior Rita Gonzales who collected 28 as well

as three digs and a block. After a week off, the Lady Broncs, whose record now stands at 5-15 for the season and 3-6 in conference play, will head to Englewood Cliffs, N.J. on Oct.29 to face off against St. Peter’s College. “Right now they’re the best team in the conference, so we’re trying to keep our heads up and stay optimistic,” said Hubbard. “We know what we need to work on to give us a chance there.”

Men’s cross country outclassed at Chili Pepper CC Festival Broncs faced tough national competition; preparing for GWC Championships By Alvaro Balderas With two weeks to go until the Great West Conference championships, The University of Texas-Pan American men’s cross country team looked to tune into top form at Saturday’s 21st annual Chile Pepper Cross Country Festival at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. Unfortunately for the Broncs the majority of the team had never run a 10-kilometer race before, and it showed as they finished 18th in a field of 29. To their credit the Broncs battled against nationally ranked teams like Oklahoma State (No. 4) Oklahoma (23rd) and Arkansas (25th). Bronc head coach Dave Hartman believes his team competed well and that perhaps a big race like the Chile Pepper will help UTPA as it competes

in the Great West Conference Championship Oct. 31 in N.Y., and the NCAA South Central Regional Championships Nov. 11 in Waco. “I think we had a solid race out there. It’s tough in that type of field to come back feeling like you did super good just because it’s a deep quality field,” Hartman said. “I think the biggest thing we got was the exposure of a big race atmosphere. We had solid efforts. No one had a tremendous race, but then again no one folded.” Oklahoma State took the top three spots individually on its way to winning the title. The first place time was 29:30.90. Junior Angel Ramirez said his 100th-place finish, 32:21.65, a team best, and his teammates’ performance leave him with a bittersweet taste two weeks away from conference. “We knew we had to go in there and run hard. I’m happy because that’s exactly what we did,” said the McAllen native. “But at the same time I’m not because there is room for improvement with two weeks to go. This meet helped us for conference and I feel really confident that we will defend our title.”

First-year biology graduate student first appearance and came out running Omar Doria admitted his uncertainty pretty good,” Hartman noted. about how to manage the race, saying Hartman and Gonzalez wanted to it was a major reason he finished in wait until next year in order to rein114th place with a time of 32:34.77. force the team but decided that an en“Some of us went out too conser- tire year without racing was too much. vative. There were a lot of fast runners Senior, McAllen native Gilroy and if you didn’t get out there you Martinez finished in 142nd place with were going to get a time of 33:02.75 in trouble,” he exnewcomer This meet helped us for while plained. “The first Frank Garcia of half of my race was conference and I feel really Edcouch followed pretty good, but just 14 seconds afthen the last half I confident that we will defend ter in 149th place. slowed down too Sophomore and much and that’s our title. Edinburg native what killed me. I Rolando Vela, a should have kept runner that Hartthe same pace or inman has great exAngel Ramirez creased. If I would pectations for in have done that, I Junior cross country runner conference, crossed would have gone the finish line in up a lot of places. I guess I was scared 170th place with a time of 33:38.74. of not finishing the race given that it Sophomore Andrew Lopez finished was my first 10-k in three years.” last for the Broncs recording a time of Senior Edinburg North alumni Wal- 34:31.01 for a 203rd place finish. ly Gonzalez came in 151st place with a The Broncs will be on a two-week time of 33:17.84 in his first race of the hiatus during which they will prepare season, impressing coach Hartman. for their title defense at the confer“After debating on whether or not ence championships in the Bronx on to redshirt Wally, he finally made his Halloween.

October 22, 2009


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Women’s tennis faults at ITA Southwest Regional Tournament By Kevin Stich Success was not in the cards for the Lady Broncs at last weekend’s ITA Southwest Regional Tournament hosted by Baylor University, as the team missed out on qualifying for both the singles draw and the main doubles draw. It was a confidence setback for the University of Texas-Pan American women’s tennis team after it had enjoyed successful showings against Laredo CC Oct. 2 and at the Islander Splash in September. “This weekend did not go so well at regionals,” senior Megan Bedeau said. “It was tough to play up there (Waco). There were a lot of tough teams out there. I think that our confidence could have been a lot better for one thing, but we all still stayed out there and we still tried and gave it 110 percent.” Sophomore Reetta Raty and Senior Luisa Cantu faced off against Maria Martinez-Romero and Monika Hadvigerova from the University of TexasArlington, but dropped the match 8-0. After receiving a first-round bye, Bedeau

and senior Sarah Burton were defeated by the duo of Elizabeth Ullathorne and Kelsey Garland from Texas Tech. The women’s captain added that she felt that the matches, although tough, were winnable, but that the execution just wasn’t there – a common feeling among the team members over the first half of the season. “I think the team would agree with me that the (fall) season hasn’t gone as well as we wanted it to go,” Bedeau said. “Honestly we just see it as, really truly, we can only get better from here -- we can only go up from here. Yeah it’s always going to be hard bringing in a new coach, doing different things, but honestly right now we’re just open to anything.” Notably, it was newly appointed head coach Chris Taylor’s first day on the job Saturday, as he arrived one tournament shy of the fall season’s conclusion. Despite the disappointing showing, the team looks forward to seeing what their new leader has up his sleeve. “He has a lot in store for us. It’s kind of hard though, because he’s coming in towards the end of the fall season,” Be-

deau admitted. “I’m just looking forward to seeing what happens in the future.” As the new coach and his team get acquainted, the squad will try improving to match expectations. Taylor feels he doesn’t have an accurate measurement of what the Lady Broncs need to improve on due to his unfamiliarity with the program. “We’re just going to work on getting to know each other. We need to lay the groundwork of me getting to know the girls and the girls getting to know me,” the new head coach said. “Kind of the way that I’m looking at it is, there’s all different parts to a season. The Great West tournament is the goal; it’s the pinnacle for us.” Taylor’s job will be to catalyze a positive attitude and make winning tangible. His former team, California Baptist, was an NAIA national contender, and he said that in his estimation, he doesn’t expect the leap to Division I athletics to be a huge one. “Competition is competition, regardless of whether you’re D-I, II, III or NAIA,” he said. “I think there’s a general misconception, not just in the tennis

Hector J. Garcia/The Pan American

EYE ON THE BALL - Reetta Raty and the Lady Broncs had a poor showing at the regional tournament, but it hasn’t affected their focus. world, but in collegiate athletics in general, that there is a hierarchy that goes Division I, Division II, Division III and then NAIA is kind of the bottom of the

barrel. And that’s just not true.” The women will look to bounce back in their next event, Texas State Play Day in San Marcos Oct. 31.

Volleyball Rebecca Toddy

Editor’s Pick

Bronc Sports Tracker Volleyball - Oct. 15 Utah Valley (L) 3-1 25-14, 25-17, 21-25, 25-18 -Oct. 17 Chicago State (W) 3-0 25-16, 25-19, 25-18

Men’s Cross Country Chile Pepper CC Festival Texas-Pan American - 18th place M. Angel Ramirez - 100th (32:21.65) Omar Doria - 114th (32:34.77) Gilroy Martinez - 142th (33:17.84) Frank Garcia - 149th (33:16.55) Wally Gonzalez - 151th (33:17.84)

Women’s Tennis ITA Regionals - Singles Reetta Ray (W) 6-2, 6-1 Andrea Salvetova (L) 6-3, 0-6, 6-3 Sarah Burton (L) 6-2, 6-3 Luis Cantu (L) 6-3, 2-6, 6-3 Megan Bedeau (L) 6-4, 6-4

Minnesota (6-0) at

Digs needed to break record:

Pittsburgh (4-2)

154 Four games remaining for regular season

Sunday noon on Fox Prediction: 34-31 Pittsburgh

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October 22, 2009


Age: 19 Color: Green Movie: The Hangover Sport other than golf: Football Golf player: Tiger Woods TV Show: South Park Major: Business Management Hero/Role Model: I don’t have one NFL Team: Cowboys Band/Artist: Tech Nine Dream Job: Professional Golfer Biggest Fear/Phobia: Swimming in murky water Who’s gonna win the World Series?: I have no idea

By Sara Hernandez What started as a pastime for Armen and Kevin Kirakossian soon became not only a lifestyle and a passion, but the factor that brought them together as part of the same golf team for the first time in their lives. “I started playing in my childhood and started to practice seriously at about 10,” freshman Kevin said. “As a little kid you start just hitting the golf ball just for fun, you start taking it seriously as you get older.” The relationship of the brothers through golf began more than 10 years ago when their father, George - a golf amateur who migrated from Armenia to the United States at age 15 to escape a national conflict - first introduced them to the game as they grew up in Portland, Ore.

Although it didn’t seem very attractive for the young players, they mentioned that the sport is something they grew into and started dedicating more time to it. Now it is a big thing for them. “Our dad would take us out to hit balls when we were younger,” senior Armen said. “He kind of forced us to go out there and it started getting fun after a while. At the beginning I wasn’t too much into it but as I started getting older I started liking it more.” Armen, 21, has been a valuable player for the UTPA golf team since he was recruited in 2006 by former head coach Andrew Tredway, also an Oregon native. The senior, who led the Broncs as a top finisher in four of the five tournaments of the spring season with an overall hitting average of 72.6, said that he enjoys having his younger brother on the same team and getting the opportu-

nity to guide Kevin through his first year in college. “I think that I set a good example for him; he went on the same path I went,” he said. “He’s already playing pretty well; I’ve set some pretty good scores for him to try to catch and he’s on his way to beating them with what he’s shown so far.” Kevin, 19, finished only two strokes behind his brother in the Mission Inn Fall intercollegiate, the first tournament of the season which took place Oct. 2-3, and placed fourth with 140 hits in the Elkins Lake Fall Men’s Golf Classic last week, leading the Broncs and beating his brother by 11 strokes. But he said that the competition between them brings nothing but motivation for both of them to do better every time they step on the green, where they have different playing styles - while Armen practices a ma-

Age: 21 Color: Blue Movie: Caddyshack Sport other than golf: Basketball Golf player: Tiger Woods TV Show: House Major: Business Management Hero/Role Model: Tiger Woods NFL Team: Cowboys Band/Artist: Akon Dream Job: Professional Golfer Biggest Fear/Phobia: Spider Who’s gonna win the World Series?: Yankees Photos by Daniel Flores

ture, more calculated golf, Kevin’s youth is revealed in the aggressiveness with which he performs. “He sets the standards for me and I just try to meet his standards; sometimes I don’t sometimes I exceed his standards,” Kevin said. “I’m always trying to be better than him, but he’s trying to be better than me at the same time: It’s a win/win (situation) for both of us.” Outside of the court, the relationship of the business management students is not much different from that of any other siblings who support each other but also have individual lives. “We don’t really think much about the golf course,” Armen said. “We do our own stuff but we also hang out together, we have the same friends so we hang out with the same group of people.” Throughout Kevin’s life, the influence of his older brother has been cru-

cial motivation, causing him to excel. He reflects that for the Kirakossians, who have a 17-year-old brother named Zorhab (who does not practice golf) there’s nothing more important than their appreciation for each other. “I try to meet (Armen’s) standards, try to follow what he’s done and improve on it,” he said. “I pretty much haven’t done anything else in my life so far.” With two more tournaments this semester, Sunday’s Husky Invitational hosted by Houston Baptist and the UTPA Golf Classic Nov. 2, and the entire spring season ahead of them, Kevin said he’s enjoying his first campaign as a Bronc with thrills about what it may bring for both of them. “I’m having a good time,” he said. “It’s the first time we ever get to compete together on a team so it’s been fun so far.”

October 22, 2009  

Vol. 66 No. 08

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