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THE

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T h e S t u d e n t N e w s p a p e r o f T h e U n i v e r s i t y o f Te x a s - P a n A m e r i c a n

SGA hopefuls to present at forum

March 30, 2006

Marijuana penalties cause debate By LUKE KOONG The Pan American If students at The University of Texas-Austin have their say, being caught with marijuana on campus won’t be such a big deal. Referendum 2 in a recent campus-wide election calls for softer penalties for individuals caught with marijuana on the UT-Austin campus, penalties matching those meted out for students caught with alcohol. While 64 percent of the students who voted want a change, there is no guarantee the measure will go through. “It’s up to what can be legally done,” said Omar Ochoa, president of UT-Austin’s Student Government (SG), adding that the final say will come from the UT Board of Regents. “Just because the referendum passes doesn’t mean the Board will pass it,” he said. “This student group, if they want to continue on in the chain, has to take it on to the next step. It’s not going to magically appear on the agenda just because it passed.” Currently, anyone caught with an illegal substance, such as marijuana, is referred to Student Judicial Services and subject to dismissal from the university and residence halls. Those caught with alcohol only face educational sanctions.

By SANDRA GONZALEZ The Pan American

See FORUM page 11

BEHIND THE WHEEL Referendum 2 was pushed onto the ballot by Safer Alternative for Enjoyable Recreation (SAFER), an organization based out of Denver, Colo. According to its Web site, SAFER is sponsoring a movement “in which the private adult possession and use of marijuana is treated in the same or similar manner as the private adult possession and use of alcohol.” While not promoting the use of marijuana, members are trying to spread the word that it is a safer substance to use compared to booze.

Ed Martinez/The Pan American

While the first round of local primary elections may be over, The University of Texas-Pan American’s Student Government Association is gearing up for some elections of its own. Wednesday, students had a chance to hear candidates for college senator and senator-at-large state their platforms. Today at noon, it will be the presidential and vice-presidential candidates’ turns. Current senator for the College of Science and Engineering Anupama Reddy encourages students to attend the upcoming forum, as it is a critical part of the election process. “Before they vote, they get to hear what these candidates are running for and what their goals are for the next year,” Reddy, who helped organize the forums, said. In the coming days, students should check their preferred e-mail addresses for a link that provides an SGA election pin number that they need in order to vote in the elections taking place April 3-7. While the decisions are ultimately up to the students, Reddy says SGA has its own hopes as far as a new president is concerned. “As far as president goes, we’re looking for good leadership skills; someone who can take care of the association,” she said. Reddy, who is not running because she graduates in December, says in her one year as part of SGA, she has learned a lot about what it takes to contribute. “SGA takes a lot of time. So at the same time as far as school goes they should be able and willing to put in a lot of time and effort into SGA,” she said. Though it may be a lot of work, there are several people to make sure the job gets done. According to Reddy, there will be six senators at-large elected; their job is to make sure the voice of the student body is represented. College senators will also be elected, with the number of senators representing each college dependent on the population of students in that college. There is one senator for every 800 students in a college. Joey Nichols, a senior biology major and outgoing SGA vice president, said that voting says a lot about student involvement on campus. “I think this year we have worked very hard to strengthen the voice of the students of UTPA,” Nichols said. “A larger turnout in the elections is reaffirmation that our efforts to reach out to the students and to involve them in the workings of the university are perceived as effective.” Still, Nichols noted that a large turnout of candidates could cause a bit of a problem when it

see Page 15

See PENALTIES page 11

Search for provost continues By SANDRA GONZALEZ The Pan American When you lose something you’ve had for quite a while, it’s never easy to find a replacement. Nonetheless, The University of Texas-Pan American is well on its way to finding a new provost and vice-president for academic affairs to replace Rodolfo Arevalo. A search committee is at work. “President Cardenas has appointed the search

committee composed of faculty, as recommended by the Faculty Senate, a vice president, an interim dean, representation from various academic areas and other offices that work with this position, and a student,” said Ala Qubbaj, committee co-chair and associate professor of mechanical engineering. At their first meeting, held Wednesday, the committee reviewed the position description and finalized the advertisement set to be released

See SEARCH page 11

Sandra Gonzalez/The Pan American SEARCHING - Teofilo Ozuna (left) speaks to Ala Qubbaj at a committee meeting on Wednesday.

Terry speaks on gay activism By CAROLINA SANCHEZ The Pan American

Joel de la Rosa/The Pan American ACTIVIST - Jamiel Terry speaks to a crowd of 60-70 at the Student Union Theater on Wednesday night on his life as a gay activist.

The University Program Board (UPB) and the Hello World Committee brought Jamiel Terry, “one of the most intriguing gays of 2004” according to Out Magazine, to talk about his personal experiences and gay activism. Although some of the ads promoting this event were destroyed in protest, many people attended the event. “I was greatly saddened and dismayed that

some professors and students are so close-minded and not willing to listen,” said Adan Nieto, chair of the Hello World Committee. “Professors are here to enlighten us and open the minds of students, not close them off.” He went on to explain the reason for Terry’s visit. “The idea of bringing this speaker to university was born because we felt it’s an issue that needs to be talked about,” added Nieto. Terry feels that his story, while one-of-a-kind, is relevant to many people.

See ACTIVISM page 11


OPINIONS

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March 30 2006

UNPROTECTED TEXT

Justice is blind, but I am not

THE

PAN AMERICAN

Jury selection pool vs. gene pool

1201 West University, CAS 170 Edinburg, Texas 78539 (956) 381-2541 Fax: (956) 316-7122 http://www.panam.edu/dept/panamerican

By DAVID RODRIGUEZ The Pan American

55th Year – No. 24

Editor Claudette Gonzalez claudetteelena @gmail.com News Editor Sandra Gonzalez sandra_panamerican @yahoo.com A & E Editor Meredith LaGrone meredith_lagrone @hotmail.com Sports Editor Daryl Gonzales daryl_gonzales2002 @yahoo.com Graphics Editor LyLony Cazares lylony@gmail.com Photography Editor Joel de la Rosa delarosa.joel @gmail.com Designers Brian Carr carr.ba@gmail.com Erika Lopez lopez475@yahoo.com Laura C. Gomez lm.gomez@yahoo.com Advertising Mgr. Rafael Villarreal spubs@panam.edu Reporters Adriana Garza Ana Ley Angela Salazar Claralexis Rios David Rodriguez Frank Calvillo Jorge Hinojosa Luke Koong

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 university.

Letters policy The Pan American gladly accepts letters from students, staff and faculty regarding newspaper content or current issues. The Pan American reserves the right to edit submissions for grammar and length. Please limit submission length to 300 words. The Pan American cannot publish anonymous letters, or submissions containing hate speech or gratuitous personal attacks. Letters are printed at the discretion of the editor and must include the writer’s name, class/title and phone number.

Maria Mazariegos Trey Serna Photographer Joey Cortez Translator Mercedes Cantu Adviser Dr. Greg Selber

Secretary Anita Casares Delivery William Watts Thursday at Noon

Readers with disabilities may request an alternative format of this publication at The Pan American business office. For special assistance to attend any event listed in this publication, contact the coordinator of the event at least one week prior to the advertised date. Articles are written and published at the discretion of The Pan American newspaper. Should readers wish to submit story ideas to the editor, please allow two weeks for processing.

When I got the notice in the mail that I had been summoned for jury duty I didn’t think much of it. Mostly because I intentionally put things I receive in the mail out of my mind as soon as possible. I live in fear of the mail. And I don’t mean only what the letters say, I mean I’m scared of the actual envelopes as well. “No news is good news” isn’t just an adage for me. It’s a mantra of self preservation. But I registered and waited a few weeks for my turn to get dismissed. It was in those weeks that it occurred to me that this particular foray of mine into the world of law was going to be a bit different. Previously I had simply claimed various exemptions to get out of my “social privilege” of serving on a jury. But this time I had no such exemptions. I was actually going to have to throw my name into the hat.

So throw I did. I showed up bright and early at the city auditorium with nothing but a pen, a pack of cigarettes, a book with a little too much pink on the cover, and an open mind about our local judicial system. I left in the middle of the afternoon with fewer cigarettes and a myriad of questions revolving around one important issue. How the hell can you randomly gather about 500 people and not get one attractive woman? Seriously, how is that possible? Was it just cosmic coincidence or is there a logical process we can take to arrive at an answer? I figure the explanation can be found in one of two schools of thought. The first school would be rationalism. Suppose we take beauty, as an abstract concept, and give it parameters in so far as how I perceive it. I guess you could say that beauty for me at this stage in life is still somewhat linked to youth. So we could strike young women because they more than likely go to school and therefore have the automatic exemption to be relieved of jury duty to pursue their education. That would certainly cut down on the number of possible attractive jury candidates in the city auditorium. Now, I feel

it necessary to say that I don’t worship at the altar of youth and I can certainly see beauty in women over 25, unlike the producers of any show on MTV. But perhaps we can say that women of that age, especially in the Valley, have more, shall we say, maternal concerns than their youthful counterparts. Especially if they are attractive. So I believe we can rationally say that perhaps many attractive women who would otherwise be part of the jury pool and perhaps sitting in my line of sight in the city auditorium at 9 in the morning were exempt because of child care issues. Personally, I’m leaning toward this school of thought because the second is almost too much for me to bear. The second school of thought would be a paranoid conspiracy theory where I didn’t see any attractive women in this huge building of 500 people randomly selected because I am in fact not attractive either. Maybe the selection isn’t so random after all. Maybe people here aren’t overwhelmingly aesthetically pedestrian. I am just part of the “butt ugly” jury selection pool. Maybe next week is the “Hot Jury Selection, sponsored in part by Coors Light and The Sharper Image.” Maybe next week it’s like “America’s

fighting never pays Based On A True Story: Why off for the hard working Sort of...

Next Top Model” and the whole auditorium is filled with a throng of hard bodies, natural tans, and winning smiles unaided by Crest White Strips. Exquisite cheekbones mingle with perfectly manicured sideburns. Business cards and phone numbers, laughs and hugs are all traded between the most beautiful specimens this area has to offer. Maybe they bat a beach volleyball around the whole time while waiting for the judge to appear. Maybe the judge never appears at the front because she’s too busy matriculating through the crowd thanking everyone for being there AND being so beautiful. Perhaps I’ve totally missed the point because of self delusion and this whole time I’ve been wrestling with why I was stuck with a bunch of freaky zombies with too much blush and eyebrows plucked into oblivion, the answer all along has been that I actually belong among the freaky zombies. So anyway jury duty sucked and I was dismissed on the second day. I never got to see pictures of a chalk outline or anything. If you went to jury duty when I did and you don’t feel you are a mutant please send hate mail and headshot to davideric@gmail.com.

by Laura C. Gomez


NEWS

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School board candidate . . . . . . 5

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Holocaust survivor . . . . . . . . . 5

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Professor searches for anti-cancer drugs By MARIA ALEJANDRA MAZARIEGOS The Pan American This year about 564,830 Americans are expected to die of cancer, a disease characterized by uncontrolled growth and spread of abnormal cells. When the math is done, this figure equals about 1,500 people per day. In spite of notable achievements in the field of cancer treatment using chemotherapy, surgery and radiation, the outlook for a definite cure remains unfavorable. The University of Texas-Pan American has joined the fight against cancer through chemistry

Popularity of online colleges raises questions By ADRIANA GARZA The Pan American Raul Ramos, a freshman business marketing major, used to wake up and start working on his assignments in the comfort of his own home. Though it’s been several years since he’s taken a class online, he remembers taking rhetoric via the Internet, where he would work on just his online quizzes an average of an hour or so every day. “The only thing is the discipline factor,” Ramos said. “It’s like there’s no one telling you when to go to class or when to get online, you do whatever you want. You have to be responsible.” In February 2006, Congress passed a bill stripping away restrictions on student financial aid for online colleges. Previously, colleges were required to provide at least half of their courses exclusively on campus in order to receive governmental financial aid money. Now, without this requirement, the doors are opening for online colleges everywhere. Kaplan University, located in Davenport, Iowa, has been in existence since 1937. In 2000, it established Kaplan University Online because of increasing demand. The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA) regionally accredits them both. “Well, we started with a few hundred students in 2000,” Caitrin Muldoon, a Kaplan University public relations associate in Fort Lauderdale, said. “We now have 23,000 students enrolled in our online program and we do have a campus in Iowa. We have a few hundred there as well.” Kaplan University offers bachelor’s degrees,

See ONLINE page 12

CHEMISTRY WORK - Marcelino Medina, a junior biology major, presents his research work to Bimal Banik’s organic chemistry students Wednesday morning in SCIE 2.108. Medina is one of nine research assistants working under Banik, who is studying anti-cancer drugs.

professor Bimal K. Banik and his research to develop a cancer-fighting chemical. Many available drugs are unable to differentiate between normal and malignant cells or cannot overcome the cancer cells’ resistance mechanisms. “A need exists for new anti-cancer agents with high potency, less toxicity to the non-cancerous cells and unique mechanisms of actions,” said Banik. “I envision that important and life-saving antibiotics-related compounds may serve as extremely useful agents if they can be constructed and synthesized properly.” This hypothesis and the prevalence of cancer

See RESEARCH page 12

Joey Cortez/ The Pan American

Study links animal, spousal abuse By ANA LEY The Pan American Once a person realizes the ability to make a difference for the betterment of society is within reach, it is hard to ignore, says Alonzo Cavazos, a social work professor at The University of Texas-Pan American. That is why Cavazos is currently a statistician for a research study focusing on the link between animal and spousal abuse in the Rio Grande Valley,

conducted by Catherine Faver. He says this was an opportunity he could not pass up. “I began working with Dr. Faver on this research project primarily because, really, I couldn’t just walk away from something this groundbreaking after understanding how important it is to make a difference in people’s lives,”Cavazos said. Along with that research, he will also take part in a conference this week on the topic. The event will be hosted by the City of Brownsville and the UTPA department of rehabilitation, in conjunction with the End Violence Against Women with Disabilities project. The conference will be at the Brownsville Event Center from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Thursday, and from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday. The research will be an important part of the event. Faver, also a professor of social work, has worked on this research project since 2003. It is comprised of a survey study of 501 women at two domestic abuse centers in Cameron County, delving

into the issue of pet abuse as a means of using power and control over battered women, along with and the emotional impact of pet abuse on these women. The study’s findings have been that this abuse is a unique form of battering that inflicts psychological trauma the woman and often pain, suffering and even death to the animal. “Previous studies have found that many times, a woman in an abusive spousal relationship will not leave her husband if he threatens to harm her pet, and this is what studies like the one I am conducting aim to get at,” she explained. What makes her study unique to others previously conducted is that Faver’s survey also focuses on the ethnicity of women, primarily those of Hispanic origin, who suffer from this type of abuse. “What Dr. Faver is doing is essential for educating social workers dealing with cases of abuse,” said Cavazos. “She helped me see that there can be

See ABUSE page 12

End-of-semester advisement in full swing By HECTOR CANO The Pan American Every now and then people need a little help and guidance. This need gets a little more acute at the end and beginning of semesters. To help ease the pain and confusion of registration, academic advisers have opened their doors to students once again. According to Marilyn Hagerty, director of the Academic Advisement and Mentoring Center, students may arrange individual appointments with a career adviser to further clarify career objectives, choose a major, decide on a graduate school, and treat other career concerns. With this semester coming to an end, students must start planning the fall schedule and examine their progress. While registration has already started for some, there are still many students who have yet to get advised. Hagerty said it is best to come to

advisement prepared so the meeting will be efficient and productive. “Bring in a list of classes you are interested in taking. Bring a list of questions that you may have regarding sequencing of classes, prerequisites, department requirements, program admissions deadlines,” she said. Receiving advisement will help students save time, as they clarify where they stand and avoid taking unnecessary classes. “I’ve been going for advisement ever since I started attending school and talking with an academic career advisor or professional guidance counselor has helped me in my degree with fewer unneeded courses plus saving time and money,” said Maria Rivera, a senior finance major. Hagerty said advisement will also assist students by helping them choose a major or decide

See ADVISEMENT page 12

ADVISEMENT For help with advisement or professional guidance, counselors are available in each college to assist students. Arts & Humanities Missie Hernandez, COAS 348A Business Administration Elvia Segura, COBA 120A Education Steven Chapa, EDCC 1.302 Health Sciences and Human Services Laurie Martinez, HSHW 2.150 Science & Engineering Tanya Sheetz, Southwick Hall 124 Social & Behavioral Sciences Jay Garcia, SBS 228


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NEWS

March 30, 2006


NEWS

March 30, 2006

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Mercedes teen runs for place on school board By CLAUDETTE GONZALEZ The Pan American In upcoming local elections, one Valley teenager is striving to leave his mark on his community. Benjamin Castillo, 18, is running for Place 4 on the Mercedes School Board with the hopes of bringing a fresh perspective to the school district’s leadership. The Mercedes High senior is concurrently enrolled at The University of Texas-Pan American. While his current declared major is biology, Castillo’s interest in politics might bring him to change this. “Ever since I was young, I’ve said that I want to be a doctor,” Castillo said. “But, I’m starting to see I’m more interested in government and history and English.” At home, the former varsity football and basketball player gets a double dose of educational wisdom. “This is what I know,” Castillo said. “Both of my parents are educators and this is what we talk about. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, we discuss the problems they face in school.” Castillo’s father, Fernando Castillo, is the superintendent for the Progreso Independent School District. His mother, Diana Dominguez, an administrator for the Mercedes School District, relies on her 15 years of experience with the school district when giving her son advice. “He needs to be fair and openminded,” Dominguez said. “He needs to

look at the whole picture, especially when it comes to policies.” While confident that her son will have a positive impact on the school district if elected, Dominguez first cautioned him about the importance of the school board members’ role. “We sat down and said, ‘You know, this is going to be a full-time job,’” Dominguez said. “But I know he can make a difference. Right now he’s in the school so he’s right in the middle of it and he understands the problems that we have here in Mercedes.” Castillo agreed, explaining that he believes that his constant presence at the high school gives him an excellent vantage point. “I’m at the high school every day,” Castillo said. “I see what the teachers need and what the high school needs.” In contrast, Castillo believes that the current school board members may not be as in touch with what is happening. “I never see school board members at the schools,” he said. “I don’t know how they know what’s going on.” However, one of Castillo’s opponents, incumbent Henry Howell Jr., explained that although he is not at the schools on a daily basis, he and the other school board members are kept informed by the superintendent. “If something noteworthy happens at one of our schools, the superintendent picks up the phone and tells us about it,” said the 57-year-old Mercedes native. Improvement in technology

available to students and teachers tops Castillo’s list of needs to be satisfied. “I’ve been to neighboring school districts and some of those schools have Smart Boards in every room. At Mercedes High School, I haven’t seen one,” Castillo said. “[The schools also] need more computers, more access to the Internet because, like on projects, not everybody can go home to do research papers. We need more access to the Internet so they can do their work.” Another top priority for Castillo is increasing teacher pay. “We need to keep salaries competitive because many of our good teachers are leaving to neighboring districts,” he said. Howell agreed that those issues are high priority for him as well. Although

budget constraints make it hard to supply every need that arises, last summer the school board approved a 3.5 percent teacher pay raise. “The problem that we have is that we’re the seventh or eighth poorest district in Texas,” said Howell, a program manager for the Office of Eligibility Services under the Texas Department of Health and Human Services. “We try to get money from grants for technology and from the state but there are only so many sources.” According to Howell, among other things, the school district is trying to find money to fund the construction of a new junior high, the repair of existing buildings, and the purchases of new school busses. While some worry that Castillo is

Joel de la Rosa/The Pan American LEADERS OF TOMORROW, TODAY - Benjamin Castillo, student of Mercedes High School and UTPA, will face off against incumbent Henry Howell in May for Mercedes School Board Place #4.

too young and doesn’t have the necessary experience to do the job effectively, he said the community’s overall reaction to his bid for election has been positive. In fact, many have even backed him financially. “I’m funding my campaign through donations from the community – attorneys, other local politicians,” Castillo said. However, the teen still asserts that this financial support will not affect his policy decisions if he’s elected. “That’s the first thing I said: ‘Thank you for your support, but I’m not going to be favoring anybody,’” Castillo said. “I’m going to be doing what I think is best for the schools.” Castillo’s campaign has motivated other young people in the community to become involved in the local political process by registering to vote. “This is the first time the student vote has been mobilized in such high numbers in Mercedes,” he said. “I’ve registered about 100 high school students to vote already.” In Howell’s opinion, this is a positive thing for the community as a whole. “[Castillo] has stirred up a lot of the students at the high school. And that’s good!” Howell said. “I’m glad they’re getting involved at an early age.” Coincidentally, Mercedes isn’t the only school district in which young community members have been inspired to join the ranks of the school board members. In Mission, 18-year-old Heather Cox is also running for school board.

Words of a survivor: Epstein in depth on Holocaust By TREY SERNA The Pan American On Jan. 30, 1933, Hitler came to power over Germany. Hedy Epstein was 8. She remembers hearing her parents and other adults talking about Hitler, saying that they hoped he wouldn’t remain in power. “I thought it was adults talking a lot of nonsense,” Epstein said. She recalls hearing all of it but never thought it had much to do with her. Two months later on April 1, she realized it would affect her in an alltoo-real way. A boycott on Jewish business went into effect all over Germany. Epstein’s father and uncle had a store that her great grandfather had started in 1858 and the ban prevented Christians and other people from shopping at Jewish stores. The following months and years would prove to be a downward spiral as the Nazis took over Germany. On March 23, Epstein, came to The

University of Texas-Pan American in recognition of Woman’s History Month. The Holocaust survivor took part in a seminar held in the Student Union Theatre, during which she shared the unimaginable events that took place during her childhood.

Onydia Garza/The Pan American LEARNING FROM THE PAST - Hedy Epstein speaks about her experiences and the repeated mistakes of ignorance and hatred causing tragedies.

Epstein lives in St. Louis and has been traveling the country speaking to students since 1970, after she spoke in her son’s middle school class. According to Epstein, it grew from there to what it is today. Some went to her UTPA appearance for class assignments or extra credit, others for curiosity and interest. Despite the different reasons, everyone left more informed. “You see the movies. You read the books. But it pales in comparison until you actually meet someone who was there,” said Cristina Alexis Cruz, a junior TV/Film major. Epstein explained in horrific detail how her family was slowly torn apart under the brutal Nazi regime. She shared pictures of her family and where she lived and how everything changed when the Nazis took over. She also recited notes she received from her mother and father while they were at a concentration camp. One in particular stood out. It was a postcard

from her mother written in very shaky handwriting and with no return address. “[My mother] was saying she was traveling to the east and was saying her final goodbye to me,” Epstein said. In September 1942, “traveling to the east,” was a euphemism meaning you were probably going to Poland to an extermination camp, according to Epstein. “I didn’t want to understand at that time what my mother was telling me, so when she said she was traveling to the east, I thought maybe she was going back home,” Epstein said. “I didn’t want to understand the final goodbye.” However, her speech was not limited to her Holocaust experiences. She gave the audience advice on preventing such a gruesome history from repeating itself, starting with fighting hatred. Epstein believes that we usually hate out of ignorance; we hate the unknown or people who look different than we are. She encouraged everyone to stop hating and to become familiar with

the unknown, because she believes there’s a whole lot to be learned from getting to know people who are different than we are. She reminded everyone to think and choose wisely in our everyday situations. “You’ll be making choices every single day for the rest of your lives and before you put those choices or decisions into practice, think about it,” Epstein said. “If you think it’s going to be hurtful to someone else or yourself, re-think it and hopefully you’ll make a better choice.” Lastly, she encouraged everyone, no matter who we are, to know that we can all make a difference in the hectic world. “No one is too old or too young or too anything to not make a difference in this life,” she said. “There’s a lot of problems in this world and no one can do everything, but if each and every one of us picks up some responsibility, then maybe some day we can all live in peace and in harmony together.”


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EN ESPAÑOL

March 30, 2006

Candidatos por SGA presentan opinones en foro Por SANDRA GONZALEZ Traducido por MERCEDES CANTU The Pan American Mientras que las elecciones locales están por acabarse, la Asociación de Gobierno Estudiantil de la Universidad de Texas-Pan Americana se prepara para llevar acabo sus propias elecciones. Miercoles, los estudiantes tuvieron la oportunidad de escuchar a los candidatos para senadores universitarios. Hoy a 12:00 p.m. será el turno de los candidatos a la presidencia y vicepresidencia. Actual senadora del Colegio de Ciencias e Ingeniería, Anupama Reddy, anima a los estudiantes a que asistan a los próximos foros por los que son partes críticas para las elecciones. “Antes de votar, tienen que escuchar lo que los candidatos dicen sobre sus ideales, lo que proponen y sus metas para el próximo año,” dijo Reddy, quien es parte del Comité de Elecciones. Durante los próximos días, los estudiantes deberán revisar su dirección de correo electrónico para encontrar un vínculo que los lleve al número de identificación personal (PIN). Este numero PIN será lo que los estudiantes necesitan para poder votar en las elecciones que darán lugar del 3 al 7 de Abril. Mientras que la decisión es totalmente de los estudiantes, Reddy dijo que la SGA tiene su esperanza para el elegido presidente. “Para presidente buscamos alguien que tenga buenas habilidades de liderazgo, alguien que pueda hacerse cargo de la asociación,” ella dijo. Reddy, quien no es candidata por lo que se graduara en diciembre, dice haber aprendido mucho siendo parte de la SGA durante un año. “La SGA toma mucho tiempo. Así que al mismo tiempo que lleva la escuela ellos deberán de ser hábiles y de tener la disposición de darle el tiempo y esfuerzo necesario a la SGA,” dijo. Aunque podrá ser mucho trabajo, habrá algunas personas que ayudaran a asegurarse de que el trabajo se cumpla. De acuerdo con Reddy, habrá seis senadores seleccionados cuyo trabajo consistirá en asegurarse que la voz de los estudiantes sea escuchada y representada. Senadores colegiales también serán elegidos. El número de senadores que representaran cada colegio depende en la populación de estudiantes en el mismo. Por cada 800 estudiantes

en el colegio, habrá un senador. Ella también señaló que sabiendo que los senadores colegiales serán una representación dentro de un nivel muy importante, esto debería de incitar a los alumnos asistir a las tribunas electorales. “Ellos son básicamente la puerta principal entre los estudiantes y la administración,” dijo. “Es de mucha importancia elegir un senador que en realidad ira con los estudiantes y quiera las opiniones de los estudiantes para llevarlas a la administración.” Joey Nichols, vicepresidente de la SGA, dice que el voto dice mucho de los estudiantes y su participación dentro de la universidad. “Creo que este año hemos trabajado muy duro para fortalecer la voz de los estudiantes de UTPA,” expreso Nichols. “Una mayor asistencia en las elecciones es una reafirmación de que nuestros esfuerzos para llegar a los estudiantes y para involucrarlos en los trabajos dentro de la universidad han sido efectivos.” Aun así, Nichols nota que una mayor asistencia podrá dar pie a un problema al momento de elegir presidente y vicepresidente. “Con el presidente y vicepresidente, tendremos un total de cuatro candidatos. Tienes que tener la mayoría de votos, 50 porciento de los votos,” dijo. “Será muy difícil llegar a esto cuando son cuatro los boletos.” Si ninguno recibe la mayoría de los votos, se llevara a cabo una segunda elección. En este caso, durante la semana siguiente a las elecciones, los dos grupos con mayores resultados competirán entre ellos mismos durante las siguientes elecciones. “Las tribunas se abrirían de nuevo y los estudiantes deberán de estar al pendiente de un segundo correo que los invitara a participar en las segundas elecciones ejecutivas,” dijo Nichols. Como saliente vicepresidente, Nichols tiene la esperanza de que el presente año la SGA dejara un legado de “obsolescencia.” “Espero que las personas que vendrán después de nosotros harán que brille todo lo que hemos logrado. Yo quiero que nuestra organización continué creciendo como lo ha hecho,” dijo. “Yo quiero que nuestros esfuerzos se vean pequeños a comparación de lo que la SGA lograra algún día.”

Joel de la Rosa/The Pan American AYUDANDO - Ed Casas, Josey Salazar y Natalie Kawaja toman parte de ‘The Clothesline Project,’ diseñando camisetas representando las historias de violencia contra mujeres. El objetivo de este evento es de ayudar a empesar el proceso curativo de las victimas.


A&E

„ ‘Red’ at IMAS. . . . . . . . . 8 & 9 „ Pan American Days. . . . . . . .10 „ Other People’s Poetry. . . . . 10

Local band features student drummer

By TREY SERNA The Pan American The manner in which individuals choose to vent is what sets them apart from the rest and makes them unique. There are many forms in which people can display their emotions: some write, draw, dance or even do it through music. J.P. Chapa, 20, is a drummer for the local band No Place Like Home and a University of Texas-Pan American sophomore. Chapa is just like any other college student who enjoys hanging out with his friends and watching movies like “Fight Club” and episodes of “Seinfeld” and “Family Guy.” But among his many hobbies, music has definitely made its way to the top. Chapa began his musical journey at 15. He was in a band, The Closest of Calls, before joining his current group in November 2005. Music was a natural evolution for Chapa, since he grew up around it. “My father has been a drummer since he was a small child, and my mother knows how to play several musical instruments,” he said. Chapa is multi-talented and can play a variety of instruments. He studied music for two years at Texas A & M-Kingsville and can play piano, guitar, bass, some trumpet, marimba, timpani and Latin percussion. “The ability to play music came naturally, I guess,” he said. “However, I can’t read music well. I still have to work on that.”

JP Chapa

DIFFERENT VIEW Although some believe the Rio Grande Valley music scene is booming, Chapa doesn’t agree. “I’m new to the scene here in the Valley, and from what I hear from veterans that I know, the music scene is dying,” Chapa said. “People should really go out and support our local music scene.” Chapa’s band performs at small cafés and venues throughout the Valley. “I really like playing at the Smoke Shack,” he said. “It’s a really good atmosphere, and I think it could be the newest hot spot.” Besides making music for his own personal satisfaction and local places, Chapa has higher goals. “I hope to bring something new to the music scene,” Chapa said. “I would really love to do a small tour and take the band to its limits. I want to learn more and more about music and hopefully travel a little.” His musical taste and style extend much farther than just the type of music he creates. “I enjoy all types of music, from country to hip-hop,” Chapa said. “I like artists like Garth Brooks, Mos Def, Bloc

J.P. Chapa DOWN TIME - Chapa takes time off from practice and schoolwork to relax and unwind at a coffee shop.

Party, DFA 1979, Ted Leo and Underoath.” On top of Chapa’s talent and dedication to his music, he’s a good friend and nothing but positive comments come from the people closest to him. “He’s a very caring, always there for his friend kind of guy. If you need a favor, he’ll do it without being asked,” Metztli Escalante, a friend of Chapa’s, said. “He’s funny with a silly sense of humor.” Chapa’s influence as a friend has not just touched those in the Valley, though. The Rio Hondo native accumulated many close friends from his time in Kingsville, as well. “I miss seeing J.P. every day,” said Julia Rangel, a TAMUK graduate. “He is so sweet and nice, and he just has the best sense of humor and personality.”

J.P. Chapa PRACTICE - J.P. Chapa works his drum part for a rehearsal with his band ‘No Place Like Home.’

And according to his band mates, they all get along with no problems. With a future that can be uncertain, both with the band and school, Chapa keeps a positive outlook. “Honestly, I feel a little lost as far as my academic future is concerned. I just have to keep praying about it,” Chapa said. “If I had three wishes for the band, it

would be to record at least one album, go on a huge tour and make some fans happy.” As for words of encouragement to others who want to seek out music and possibly form a band, his advice is simple. “Get along with your band mates. Make them your brothers or sisters,” Chapa said. “I love my band.”

UTPA flamenco dancers ready to heat up stage with new moves By CLARALEXIS RIOS The Pan American The University of Texas-Pan American’s “flamenco ensemble, Cuadro,” directed by Fred Darsow, will perform its second annual spring concert April 6-8 at 7:30 p.m. and April 9 at 2 p.m. in the UTPA Fine Arts Auditorium. The event features different subgenres of flamenco; Darsow has choreographed some, while others are by outside sources. The concert will feature Tangos and Sevillanas by Darsow. According to him, Sevillanas is a folk dance that features couples. It will also include an Alegría, “Orobroy,” by guest artist Maria Bermudez and Solea por Bulerías, danced by Bermudez. According to Darsow, “Orobroy”

is a traditional piece by Dorantes that was performed last year. It features children

singing a traditional flamenco song. Bermudez was born and raised in

Joel de la Rosa/The Pan American OLE - Veronica Garza, a graduate student pursuing her master’s in biology, spices up the dance floor at rehearsal.

California and has resided in Jerez de la Frontera, where she studied with the legendary El Farruco, among others. She has performed in many U.S. concerts and has her own dance company called Sonidos Gitanos. Other pieces include Bulerías, or fun dances, by guest artist Nelida Tirado and Romancero Gitano by senior dance major Maria Luisa Rafols. Darsow said she is the first graduating senior to do a flamenco piece for her final project. Tirado is a New York native. She learned how to dance at age 6 by taking a class that taught her traditional dances from Spain. She continued taking dance classes for years until she started working as an individual artist after getting calls for work. She has danced in many shows in New York and Spain. Darsow said the students and guest per-

formers have been working hard to prepare for the event. “The dancers rehearse and the guest artists will come in and set the pieces which takes them a week or two and then we practice it,” he said. “I teach them material, too, and I have been working with a costume designer. This year, there will also be two guitarists, a singer and percussion. It is important to have it live, so that the students could learn to come up with the live positions.”

Juan Herrera, 22, a sophomore criminal justice major, said students gain something other than entertainment from the performance. “Curiosity and expansion of knowledge are what drives me to events like this,” he said. “I also want to learn more about the dance and acquire knowledge.”


March 30 , 2006

March 30, 2006

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

Page 9

‘Untitled’ by Paul Valadez

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

STORY BY: ANGELA SALAZAR

DESIGNED BY: ROY BAZAN

C

olors are an amazing thing. They help us get through our daily lives and can sometimes influence the way we are feeling. When looking at green some might think of grass or of being sick. Blue can calm a person down or remind one of oceans or rivers.

What comes to mind when seeing the color red? Aggression? Loyalty? Red is a striking color of power. In the presidential debates, candidates often wear red ties. In that context, the color lends a measure of authority to the wearer. But red can also symbolize love and passion, making it a popular choice at Valentine’s Day. All during the month of February, red roses, hearts and cupids are put up as a gesture of love. In commemoration of this multifaceted color, the International Museum of Art and Science’s (IMAS) is putting on an exhibit focusing on the wide variety of emotions evoked by the color red and its eyeappealing qualities. The exhibit has many different types of art ranging from sculpture and mixed media to paintings and photographs. It took months of planning to make this idea into a popular exhibit at IMAS. “It starts with an idea,” said Maria Elena Masias, curator for the Red Exhibit and lecturer in the art department at The University of Texas Pan American, “and arrangements are made for all the design of an exhibit, from concept to realization.” Each piece of artwork, just like each artist, differs from the next. A few paintings by Berry Fritz, “Red Ribbons,” “Red Delicious” and “Red Spanish Shawl,” each captivate the eye by using realistic still-life painting styles that seem to the untrained eye to be photographs taken of the objects. “‘Red Ribbons’ is the second in a series of ribbon paintings,” said Fritz, who talked about her series. She has two other paintings in the exhibit from the same series. “Red Delicious” is a painting of apples that look real enough to eat, and “Red Spanish Shawl” is an actual shawl Fritz purchased and uses in her work. Fritz, a native of the United Kingdom’s Isle of Wight, currently resides in the Valley with her husband. She has had a love of art ever since she can remember. “I simply love mixing colors and juxtaposing them on a canvas to create a painted reality,” she said, describing her feelings about painting. Although she is for the most part a self-taught artist, she did study at the Central School of Art and Design in London. Miguel Acana is another artist contributing to the show. His painting is of the Superman logo, largely painted in the center of the canvas with a small torn section at the top. Underneath, the phrase “Where are you?” supports the logo. The image is Acana’s representation of the nation’s feelings after 9/11, when many hoped a new Superman would come and save the day. Another set of interesting and somewhat interactive paintings by former art chair Nancy Moyer seem to put life into perspective. Her pieces, collectively titled, “Memory Backups,” embrace the importance of friends within a person’s life. There are five separate paintings, each

of a friend in Moyer’s life. “It’s thinking about our perception of reality,” Moyer said, “As long as we remember an experience, it exists. If the other participant

‘Fide l Ca stro Ciga r Bo x’ by

her work. Her piece “Red BMW” is, in fact, black. It is a carving all in black marble and is one of Bunt’s favorite pieces. It seems from a distance to resemble a crushed soda can and doesn’t resemble a car much at all. “A real artist has to be very much in touch with his or her true feelings,” she said. “Face them, accept them and use them in art. Art is transfigured into symbolism.” Originally from an English family, Bunt studied art at La Esmeralda in Mexico City. Bunt’s art is mostly found through contact of her emotions and the normal everyday things she experiences. Where do our interpretations of the colors come from? Red is a color that is seen on almost every corner. How we interpret it is our choice. “People think of it in a certain way,” said Javier Maldonado, a junior graphic design major at UTPA. “We see it in the stores or in movies and are just used to the idea of it as love or blood.” Open your minds and take a look at what the exhibit has to offer. It just may change your view on what the color red means to you. The Red Exhibit opened in February and will be on display until June. Not only does it present the color in an interesting and innovative way, it helps open the minds of those who interpret red as something negative. For more information check out www.imasonline.org.

Stev e Ka ufm an

also remembers it, it’s a backup, like a second hard drive.” Each of Moyer’s friends was given a tape recorder, and provided a memory. While walking through the exhibit, one can push a button to hear the recorded memories and match the voice in the recording with the portrait. Like many artists, Moyer became interested in art at a young age and discovered her talent after drawing a portrait of her grandfather. Her education has spanned many schools including Louisiana State University and Universidad de las Americas inPuebla, Mexico. After living in Los Angeles and Illinois, Moyer was looking for a warmer climate near Mexico to move to. To her, the Rio Grande Valley couldn’t have been better as a place to live. Sculptures also play a big role within this exhibit. It is Leslie Bunt’s unique interpretation of “red” that draws a person’s attention to

‘Emergence’ by Aleida Garcia

Page 8


March 30 , 2006

March 30, 2006

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

Page 9

‘Untitled’ by Paul Valadez

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

STORY BY: ANGELA SALAZAR

DESIGNED BY: ROY BAZAN

C

olors are an amazing thing. They help us get through our daily lives and can sometimes influence the way we are feeling. When looking at green some might think of grass or of being sick. Blue can calm a person down or remind one of oceans or rivers.

What comes to mind when seeing the color red? Aggression? Loyalty? Red is a striking color of power. In the presidential debates, candidates often wear red ties. In that context, the color lends a measure of authority to the wearer. But red can also symbolize love and passion, making it a popular choice at Valentine’s Day. All during the month of February, red roses, hearts and cupids are put up as a gesture of love. In commemoration of this multifaceted color, the International Museum of Art and Science’s (IMAS) is putting on an exhibit focusing on the wide variety of emotions evoked by the color red and its eyeappealing qualities. The exhibit has many different types of art ranging from sculpture and mixed media to paintings and photographs. It took months of planning to make this idea into a popular exhibit at IMAS. “It starts with an idea,” said Maria Elena Masias, curator for the Red Exhibit and lecturer in the art department at The University of Texas Pan American, “and arrangements are made for all the design of an exhibit, from concept to realization.” Each piece of artwork, just like each artist, differs from the next. A few paintings by Berry Fritz, “Red Ribbons,” “Red Delicious” and “Red Spanish Shawl,” each captivate the eye by using realistic still-life painting styles that seem to the untrained eye to be photographs taken of the objects. “‘Red Ribbons’ is the second in a series of ribbon paintings,” said Fritz, who talked about her series. She has two other paintings in the exhibit from the same series. “Red Delicious” is a painting of apples that look real enough to eat, and “Red Spanish Shawl” is an actual shawl Fritz purchased and uses in her work. Fritz, a native of the United Kingdom’s Isle of Wight, currently resides in the Valley with her husband. She has had a love of art ever since she can remember. “I simply love mixing colors and juxtaposing them on a canvas to create a painted reality,” she said, describing her feelings about painting. Although she is for the most part a self-taught artist, she did study at the Central School of Art and Design in London. Miguel Acana is another artist contributing to the show. His painting is of the Superman logo, largely painted in the center of the canvas with a small torn section at the top. Underneath, the phrase “Where are you?” supports the logo. The image is Acana’s representation of the nation’s feelings after 9/11, when many hoped a new Superman would come and save the day. Another set of interesting and somewhat interactive paintings by former art chair Nancy Moyer seem to put life into perspective. Her pieces, collectively titled, “Memory Backups,” embrace the importance of friends within a person’s life. There are five separate paintings, each

of a friend in Moyer’s life. “It’s thinking about our perception of reality,” Moyer said, “As long as we remember an experience, it exists. If the other participant

‘Fide l Ca stro Ciga r Bo x’ by

her work. Her piece “Red BMW” is, in fact, black. It is a carving all in black marble and is one of Bunt’s favorite pieces. It seems from a distance to resemble a crushed soda can and doesn’t resemble a car much at all. “A real artist has to be very much in touch with his or her true feelings,” she said. “Face them, accept them and use them in art. Art is transfigured into symbolism.” Originally from an English family, Bunt studied art at La Esmeralda in Mexico City. Bunt’s art is mostly found through contact of her emotions and the normal everyday things she experiences. Where do our interpretations of the colors come from? Red is a color that is seen on almost every corner. How we interpret it is our choice. “People think of it in a certain way,” said Javier Maldonado, a junior graphic design major at UTPA. “We see it in the stores or in movies and are just used to the idea of it as love or blood.” Open your minds and take a look at what the exhibit has to offer. It just may change your view on what the color red means to you. The Red Exhibit opened in February and will be on display until June. Not only does it present the color in an interesting and innovative way, it helps open the minds of those who interpret red as something negative. For more information check out www.imasonline.org.

Stev e Ka ufm an

also remembers it, it’s a backup, like a second hard drive.” Each of Moyer’s friends was given a tape recorder, and provided a memory. While walking through the exhibit, one can push a button to hear the recorded memories and match the voice in the recording with the portrait. Like many artists, Moyer became interested in art at a young age and discovered her talent after drawing a portrait of her grandfather. Her education has spanned many schools including Louisiana State University and Universidad de las Americas inPuebla, Mexico. After living in Los Angeles and Illinois, Moyer was looking for a warmer climate near Mexico to move to. To her, the Rio Grande Valley couldn’t have been better as a place to live. Sculptures also play a big role within this exhibit. It is Leslie Bunt’s unique interpretation of “red” that draws a person’s attention to

‘Emergence’ by Aleida Garcia

Page 8


Page 10

A & E

March 30, 2006

Ready to get down with ‘O.P.P.’?

By FRANK CALVILLO The Pan American “You down with O.P.P.?” goes the line from Naughty By Nature’s classic rap song. Well, from the looks of things, it appears as if some Valley residents are down with O.P.P…. Other People’s Poetry, that is. Sponsored by Art That Heals, Inc., Other People’s Poetry is an event where individuals will have the chance to recite poems written by their favorite poets. The performers will be given ample time to introduce the selected poems and accept any comments from the audience. The event commemorates the start of National Poetry Month, a month-long celebration of poets of both past and present. It takes place April 1 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at The Ristretto coffee shop/restaurant located at 1102 W. University Drive, Suite B in Edinburg. Admission to the event is free, but audience members are encouraged to bring along used books, CDs or movies for donation. These items will be sold at relatively low prices during intermission and after the reading of the poetry. Sales will benefit Art That Heals, Inc., the nonprofit organization founded in 2002 that seeks to bring cultural literacy to people of the Valley while at the same time furthering awareness of the AIDS epidemic. Daniel Garcia Ordaz is a local writer and poet who helped establish the organization.

“Our mission is to promote different forms of culture in the Valley and also help the people in the Valley be aware of HIV and AIDS,” he said. “We want people to recognize the importance of both.” Ordaz, a feature writer for the Valley Morning Star in Harlingen, strongly feels that poetry has the ability to convey any message. “Poetry is an art form that is such a powerful art,” he said. “I mean, a lot of people cry when they hear the National Anthem today.” Ordaz encourages anyone with a love of poetry to step up and read. “There’s absolutely no pressure on anyone. Those who read should expect a willing, non-judgmental audience,” he said. The only rule of the evening is that no one may read his own material. According to Ordaz, the reason for this is to pay homage to those poets who came before as well as to introduce those in attendance to voices they were not aware of. A 2004 University of Texas-Pan American graduate with a bachelor’s degree in English, Ordaz published his own book of poetry in 2004 titled, “You Know What I’m Sayin’” which has already been used by various teachers and college professors. Ordaz will also be one of the readers performing April 1. “It was hard for me to decide, but I’ve chosen a poem by Langston Hughes called ‘I Dream a World,’ which talks about civil rights,” he said.

Daniel Garcia Ordaz HAPPY POETS’ SOCIETY - Last year’s event drew a vast array of poetry afficionados. Pictured front from L-R: Deborah Patillo, Rene Saldana, Dahlia Guzman, Te Norman, Melissa McEver, Judi Bowen, Lynn Brezosky and Marisa Taylor. Pictured back from L-R: Daniel García Ordaz, Erika Garza, Don Federico de la Mancha, Jessa Nunley, Dr. Kenneth Buckman, Carl Bowen and Adrian de la Rosa.

It seems as if both fine arts and social issues are two main components of Ordaz’s work. Dahlia Guzman, director and co-founder of Art That Heals, Inc. understands the inspiration behind his art and activism. “We’re all activists in one way or another,” she said. “He uses art to do something about it because he realizes that even if we aren’t affected with HIV, we really are.” This event is in its second year, and judging from last year’s audience, Ordaz believes that response will be good. “If the reactions from last year’s group were

anything to go by, I’d have to say that people will be moved by the event,” he said. UTPA junior Rachel Vela, who plans to attend the event, believes it to be very worthwhile. “I think students need to be more culturally aware. Most of them are from the Valley and probably haven’t traveled much, so they aren’t exposed to it,” she said. “It’s a good way for them to be aware of poetry and art.” For more information on the event or on Art That Heals, Inc., please visit www.angelfire.com/folk/artes/opp.html or www.athnic.org.

Pan American Days

Campus festival set to entertain and enrich By ANGELA SALAZAR The Pan American For residents of deep South Texas, the line between Mexico and the United States is often blurred since the two countries seem to blend together to make one cultural melting pot. “Pan American Days is an event celebrating our physical location,” said Marilu Salazar, director for the Office of International Programs. “It celebrates the US-Mexican border region and promotes awareness of our affinity with Latin America and the Americas as a whole.” Pan American Days is set to happen during the week of April 3-7. Each day is filled with activities, lectures, exhibits and films for students, faculty and community members to enjoy an educational experience but also a cultural one. One of the highlights for the week is an exhibit on Chicano and Mexican folk art, which will be on display in the library lobby. The opening will be on Monday at 5 p.m., with Latin American food tasting in the library courtyard. The food tasting is an interesting experience for the palette with cuisine from Peru, Chile and Argentina. Different University of Texas-Pan American organizations adopt a certain country and showcase the cuisine at a cul-

tural booth. The original concept for Pan American Days came from the actual day called ‘Pan American Day,’ which is reserved to honor the Americas. “Pan American Day is celebrated annually as a commemorative symbol of the American nations and the voluntary union of all in one continental community, marking the anniversary of the day in 1980 when this union was established,” said Salazar. Today UTPA still honors this tradition with a weeklong celebration. By keeping up this tradition, the university is blending old ways with new ones. Since a foreign country, although not so foreign to most, is just a hop and skip away, it can be easy to forget the importance of the bonds between the two countries. “The majority of the students are Hispanic,” said Celine Martinez, freshman art major at UTPA. “They need to be knowledgeable about their culture. It gives pride to Hispanics.” Others participate just to become more involved the campus itself. No matter the reason for enjoying the Pan American Days, it is an experience for all. For more information on Pan American Days, check out www.panam.edu/dept/internationalprograms.

Interested in A career Counseling People With Disabilities? The Department of Rehabilitation at The University of Texas-Pan American offers a 48-hour, nationally accredited Master of Science Degree in Rehabilitation Counseling. Degree Highlights: z A chance to make a positive difference in peoples personal lives. z Employment in a variety of settings including Division of Assistive Rehabilitation Services (DARS), Substance Abuse, Prevention/Treatment, Private Rehabilitation, Community Nonprofits, Schools. z Eligible to sit for Certification as a Rehabilitation Counselor and obtain all coursework for License as a Professional Counselor. z Competitive scholarships ($800 a month stipend plus tuition and fees) z Paid internships with DARS. z Entry-level annual salaries averaging $30,000-$35,000. An undergraduate Rehabilitation Services degree and an Addictions Studies Specialty are also offered. Deadline for applications is April 15, 2006fro Fall 2006 Semester. For more information or application for these programs, contact (956) 316-7036, email rehabservic@panam.edu, or visit our website at www.panam.edu/dept/rehabser.


NEWS

March 30, 2006

FORUM continued from page 1 comes to electing a president and vice president. “With the president and vice president we have four tickets running. You have to get the majority vote, 50 percent of the vote,” he said. “It’s going to be very hard for any one group to do that when there are four tickets running.” If nobody receives a majority vote, a runoff election is conducted. In that case, during the first week following elections the two groups with the highest number of votes go against each other in a second election.

ACTIVISM continued from page 1 “The polls [would] open again and students should keep an eye open for a second e-mail that invites them to vote in the second executive election,” Nichols said. As outgoing vice president, Nichols noted that he hopes this year’s SGA will leave a legacy of “obsolescence.” “I hope that the people that come after us outshine everything we’ve accomplished. I want our organization to continue growing as astronomically as it has been,” he said. “I want our efforts to seem small compared to what SGA will someday accomplish.”

SEARCH continued from page 1 “soon.” Greenwood and Associates, Inc. will aid the university in providing an executive search services. Arevalo left the university to become president of Eastern Washington University, effective April 1. While the search is only in the preliminary stages, Qubbaj, who also serves as chair of the Faculty Senate, said tentatively speaking, the search committee will review all applications and select the top eight to 10 for further consideration. “The finalists will be announced and then brought to campus for a second round of interviews, at which time, the campus community will get the opportunity to meet with the finalists and provide input to the committee,” Qubbaj said. From those three to five finalists, the committee will select their top pick and make a recommendation to UTPA President Blandina Cardenas. Tentatively, the committee hopes to have their top picks at the end of May and begin interviewing in June. According to Cardenas, the position should be filled by Sept. 1. Once appointed, the provost will take over many duties such as the search for and selection of new faculty, evaluation of current faculty, and

budget issues. When appointing such an important position, Qubbaj said he feels that committees are an important part the selection process. “It is the norm in academia,” he said. “It simply reflects on an open, transparent and collective input process.” Part of that collective input process is student opinion. Crystal Gonzales, a junior philosophy and English major, is the student appointed to the committee. She said she has her idea of what kind of person should be appointed to this position. “I really admire Dr. Cardenas, and I think the perfect provost would be someone who emulated her,” she said. “She has made a very big difference in the time she’s been here.” However, Qubbaj added that the opportunity to help choose the right person for the position does not come without great responsibility. “President Cardenas has already set high expectations for that position and is committed to appointing an outstanding and true academic leader, a dynamic, highly regarded leader with superior management skills,” he said.

PENALTIES continued from page 1 SAFER obtained 1,400 signatures to put the referendum onto the ballot. While it was not placed on the ballot by SG, Ochoa, son of former Edinburg mayor Joe Ochoa, said the move is still representative of the population. “It was the student body that decided the vote. That’s something you have to consider,” he said. “The students that came up to vote, that are politically active, were the ones that voiced that concern. You have to respect that and the power it holds.” About 16 percent of the student population came out to vote on Feb. 28 and March 1. While the turnout was not large, SG vice-president Elizabeth Brummett said it does indicate what UT-Austin students want. “I think it was actually a lot better than a lot of other university voter turnouts. I don’t think it’s a complete sample, but I honestly think most students are supportive of it,” she said. “I wasn’t too surprised that it passed.” There are some at UT-Austin who feel the passing of the referendum will encourage the use of illegal substances. “More weed would come into the dorms. It’s such a small penalty that people would be willing to risk it,” said Yirsa Abreu, a senior psychology major at UT-Austin and Valley native. “They already do it now, so just imagine if they lessen the penalty.” Brummett, however, disagrees. “They want to change the university policy. There are still city policies, county policies, and state laws that say what happens if you’re caught with marijuana,” he said. CLOSE TO HOME The passing of Referendum 2 by students at UT-Austin could eventually create shockwaves that

Page 11

reach to other UT System universities. Christine Carruthers, assistant director for Student Life and Transition Services, cited several reasons why it would be some time before The University of Texas-Pan American may consider a similar move. “With drugs being so prevalent in the area, if students [caught with marijuana] take time off of school and go ahead and get their priorities, they have a higher graduation rate when they come back than if we let them continue with their classes,” Carruthers said. UTPA currently has penalties like UTAustin’s: students caught with weed are suspended as well as evicted from dorms. Carruthers said illegal substance use at UTPA is quite an issue, caused mainly by the environment students are exposed to. “It’s definitely a problem. You can generally look at the surrounding community and whatever is going on in the community is going to come onto campus,” she said. Still, at UTPA, only six cases of illegal substance use have been reported to date, versus 330 at UT-Austin. Carruthers feels that a change in policy will not necessarily increase the number of illegal substance cases, as long as UT-Austin actively campaigns about the dangers of using drugs. Additionally, individuals with drug convictions lose all federal financial aid. Carruthers did not dismiss the possibility of change, but said the university wants to ensure the well-being of its students first and foremost. “It’s something we would consider,” she said. “In the end, our best interest is going to be looking at the students and getting them to graduation.”

“My story is very unique, because I have played it in a national scene, and the struggle that I have had with my religion and homosexuality is very similar to others’ story,” Terry, 25, said. “For gay people it’s hard to deal with this because of the way the society is structured, and with this talk I am trying to make them feel community and remind them that there are people like them that are going through the same stuff.” Next, he would like to share his knowledge and personal experiences by writing a book. Terry, who was adopted at age eight by Randall and Cindy Terry, took on the activist background of his parents early on. Randall Terry was the founder of Operation Rescue, a Christian-based group that took strong positions against heated issues like abortion and homosexuality. This created a problem when Terry came out in 2004. Since then, he has had to confront problems regarding acceptance of his sexual orientation. Specifically, he and his father have not seen eye to eye on the issue. Terry also had to deal with his own inner problems with accepting his sexuality. His devout Catholic background caused an existential conflict that required a lot of strength to enable him to continue with his life. Around 60 to 70 people were in attendance for the public lecture Wednesday night in the Student Union Theater. Beforehand, the public had the opportunity to talk to the speaker and ask questions. Terry added that he was very happy about coming to UTPA, as he always finds it exciting to share his story. He explained that in some places, gays cannot do this. He says he has been the victim of personal attacks. Irasema Elizondo, a sophomore psychology

major, said the event was important because it could opens up peoples’ eyes to differences in the world. “It is very important and necessary as a person, to be informed, to learn and respect the decisions of others,” said Elizondo. Rafael Villarreal believes the lecture also helps people realize homosexuals are not the only ones that face discrimination. “The problem that happens to homosexuals happens also to Black and Jewish [individuals]. They are criticized all the time, so my opinion is that instead of attacking them, we should try to understand them,” the sophomore international business major said. The Hello World Committee coordinates activities that help inform UTPA students about world issues. According to Nieto, the university was looking for a speaker who stood out. Compared to others, Terry is closer in age to most students and has been through many of the same situations that homosexual students are now experiencing. “Mexicans have a phrase that one of our former presidents said a long time ago. ‘The respect of the rights of the others is peace,’ and I totally agree with it,” Elizondo said. “I think we need to respect the gays, because we have no right to judge them because of their sexual orientation.” In connection with this event, gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transsexuals will spend April 6 at the ballroom from noon to 1 p.m. without speaking, in commemoration of National Day of Silence. “We do this to share how we feel in our life, that we cannot express ourselves, for just being who we are, so in this way, we show our feeling,” said Ricardo Rios, a Day of Silence participant. “This is the first time that UTPA is doing, and we are very excited about it.”


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NEWS

ONLINE continued from page 3 master’s degrees, associate degrees, and certificates in just about any subject. The classes are intended to teach students skills that they will need to know in order to work in fields like criminal justice, business, education, design, information technology, paralegal studies, and health care. The online university has support centers in Chicago and in South Florida, as well as at the university campus in Davenport. “The students that are in your [online] classes might not necessarily be the same students that are enrolled at Kaplan University,” Muldoon said. “Our students tend to be older, working adults so they’re not looking for the same thing out of going to a residential campus. They’re not looking for necessarily the social interaction.” In a 2000-2001 study, performed by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) Postsecondary Education Quick Information System (PEQIS), 56 percent of all institutions provided the student community with online courses. It turns out that public colleges were more likely to offer online classes than private institutions. “People are doing this and offering classes online,” said Bill O’Neil, a University of Texas-Pan American music appreciation online instructor. “It seems more or less equally effective. It depends, on some extent, on the student, of course.” O’Neil added that if student is not willing to get up and actually do the work, online courses are not for them. “But if they’re reasonably self-motivated then they’ll do this just like everything else,” he said. “The material should be the same or the course shouldn’t be offered.” Edward Wallace, a UTPA American history lecturer, teaches a course online. He said Internet programs are different from lecture classes and have advantages and disadvantages. Wallace stated that first of all, students don’t

RESEARCH continued from page 3 have to worry about waking up, going to school, and finding a parking space. They can do the work in the convenience of their own home and on their own time, but they have to be self-disciplined to get the work done. “For a lot of people that have families, especially, it really helps out because it frees up their time,” Wallace said. “They can choose the time they wish to work on the assignments rather than having to go to class at a specific time. It’s just been growing in popularity because of that ease of being able to organize your own time the way you see fit.” JURY STILL OUT Among educators, there is always skepticism about new developments in teaching. Online courses are still fairly new and there is no real proof that they are better than or just as effective as lecture courses. “I think you would have to look at the finished product, how well their graduates do when they’re out there in the workforce, how their research skills develop, what they take with them when they leave the course or entire degree program,” O’Neil said. “It’d be awfully hard to paint everyone with the same brush.” He added that the next 15 to 20 years should be telling in regard to the true outcomes of the classes. Muldoon added that there are bad apples in every bunch. There are unaccredited programs that affect perceptions. “I think it’s the few bad institutions that are unaccredited that make the rest seem bad,” she said. Overall, Muldoon says it comes down to individuals deciding for themselves. “A lot of people want to assume that the only way to learn is in a classroom, in a lecture-style environment and that may not be the same for every person, to meet every person’s needs,” he said.

National Center for Education Statistics

ABUSE continued from page 3 a relationship between these two types of abuse and if a social worker fails to see this, then he is failing to provide a comprehensive form of treatment for the individual he is trying to assist.” The duo hopes to bring light to a phenomenon which has only emerged from the 1970s in the early nineties. They believe that through enough education, a network consisting of social workers, animal shelters, and protective services can create a support network for fighting abuse of pets and their owners. Faver believes that the Valley needs to be more knowledgeable on the matter before it can reach this networking stage. “Right now, advocates for the networking of organizations are still trying to educate the community on this,” she said. Karen Schaefer, a counselor at New Mexico

March 30, 2006

State University who will present at the conference this week, believes that the issue should be taken seriously because all living things deserve respect, and animals can contribute to the physical and mental health of an individual. “If we don’t interfere in these cases, we’re putting the animal and the person’s health on the line,” she said. “If we are able to educate mental health professionals and animal control professionals on how strong the bond between pet and owner is, then we’re letting people see the importance of this bond and really helping everyone.” Those interested in registering for the conference may contact Amy Miell, secretary for the Rehabilitative Services Office, at (956) 316-7036. Those attending must register and pay a fee of $40 for non-students and $10 for students.

have prompted him to begin a long-term project on the development of new anticancer and antibacterial agents. “We make the compounds in a way that our methods are better because they are simpler than those in the literature,” said Jocabed Marquez, a research assistant and senior chemistry major. Banik’s methods of research fall under what is known as “green chemistry,” an environmentally friendly way of working with chemicals. Using a very specific core group of molecules, Banik is systematically examining the effects of modifying those structures with the hope of finding one that will selectively interact with cancer and bacteria cells in animals. In the process, his team of researchers is discovering the method by which these cancer fighting agents work. Although the major focus of therapeutic studies in cancer chemotherapy has been the alteration of DNA’s replicate and repair functions, Banik’s studies have suggested that interactions with cell membranes may also play an important role in anti-

tumor effectiveness. His research has been funded by several private foundations and by The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, the National Institute of Health, the Faculty Research Council and University Research Initiative of UTPA, among others. The money has allowed him to hire student research assistants, providing them both with a job and valuable experience in their field of study. “It is remarkable that by doing this research I could support several students financially and academically,” said Banik. Currently nine UTPA students are collaborating with Banik, and several more are waiting to accept research positions. “I do this because I want to get the experience and to learn what it is all about,” said Isabella Garcia, a junior biology and psychology double major. Banik has been working on this research with a common and major goal since 1995. “There is no end in research. This endeavor needs forever,” he said.

ADVISEMENT continued from page 3 what to do with the chosen major. This has proven true for many students. “Going for advisement helped me find what major best fit me and my qualities,” said Teresa Navarro, a sophomore international business major.

If not for career guidance, Hagerty said, there is one more reason students should take advantage of advisement. “Students have already paid for advisement services with the ‘advisement fee,’” she noted. “They may as well get what they have paid for.”


SPORTS

March 30, 2006

SPORTS CLIPBOARD Broncs conclude Oregon Duck Invitational in seventh place Bronc senior leads team The UTPA men's golf team placed seventh out of 12 teams at the Oregon Duck Invitational after recording a three-round total of 890 (296-296-298) on Tuesday in Eugene, Ore. Senior Craig Berger was the top-finisher for the Broncs, tied for 22nd. Berger shot a 220 (7172-77) for the tournament. Kyle Tudi and Shane Pearce finished tied for the 31st as both fired off three-round tallies of 224. Jeff Hensley had the best round of the day, shooting a final round 71 for a 227 (75-81-71) mark in the tournament. Colin Norris shot a 233 (73-82-78) for the tournament. The Broncs finished 14 strokes behind sixth-place Oregon while San Diego State won the tournament championship with an 854. Nevada, Oregon State, Wyoming and Washington State rounded out the top five. UTPA will return to the links at the end of April when they travel to Greeley, Colo. for the Independent Men's Championships hosted by the University of Northern Colorado. UTPA Sports Information

Page 13

FOR THE RECORD UTPA SPORTS Baseball 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Top 5 Bronc batters Louie Alamia .361 Abraham Garcia .345 Leighton Autrey .313 Osiel Flores .277 Jason Buhagiar .265

Minimum 20 at bats.

Mar. 31 Apr. 1 Apr. 4 Apr. 7 Apr. 8 Apr. 13 Apr. 14 Apr. 18 Apr. 19 Apr. 25 Apr. 28 Apr. 29 Apr. 30

Upcoming schedule Oregon State Oregon State (DH) UT-San Antonio Birmingham-Southern Birmingham-Southern (DH) Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Stephen F. Austin Stephen F. Austin University of Texas Coastal Carolina Coastal Carolina Coastal Carolina

Home games in bold. (DH) denotes double-header

Hoffman in at OU? Ex UTPA leader in news A former Bronc coach may have hit the big time, as CBS SportsLine.com reported on its Web site Wednesday that Bob Hoffman will replace Kelvin Sampson at Oklahoma, after the latter accepted the head coaching job at Indiana this week. Hoffman, who spent five years at UTPA from 2000-2004, had been at OU for two seasons as an assistant under Sampson. The report noted that Hoffman, 48, is highly respected among Oklahoma and Texas high school coaches, and that the approaching weekend is a big one for the program with a number of recruits set to visit campus. It continued, saying that Hoffman, who won big at NAIA Oklahoma Baptist and “broke even at downtrodden Texas-Pan American,” would be the only Sampson assistant to have a shot at replacing him. Meanwhile, Hoffman is thought to be the leading candidate for two Division I jobs -- Southeast Missouri State of the Ohio Valley Conference, and Texas-San Antonio of the Southland.

Golf Men’s Oregon Duck Invitational Mar. 27-28 1. San Diego State 2. Nevada 3. Oregon State T4. Washington State T4. Wyoming 6. Oregon 7. UT-Pan American 8. UC Davis 9. Pacific 10. Portland 11. Idaho State

12. UC-Riverside Individual stats: T22. Craig Berger T31. Kyle Tudi T31. Shane Pearce 48. Jeff Hensley 62. Colin Norris

71 77 78 75 73

72 71 72 81 82

77 76 74 71 78

Upcoming schedule Apr. 29-30 Independent Champs. May. 5-7 National Minority Champs. Women’s Upcoming schedule Apr. 3-4 Texas State Bobcat Invit. Apr. 29-30 Indie Women’s Champs. May 5-7 National Minority Champs.

Tennis Men’s Upcoming schedule Apr. 2 University of Texas-Arlington Apr. 8 Texas Southern Apr. 28-30Southland Conference Tour. Home games in bold.

Women’s

Apr. 1 Apr. 8 Apr. 15 Apr. 21

Upcoming schedule Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Texas Southern Sam Houston State Independent Women’s Tennis Tour.

Home games in bold.

Track Upcoming schedule Mar. 31 Stanford Invitational Apr. 5 Tom Tellez Invitational Apr. 5-8 Texas Relays Apr. 13-15 Mount SAC Relays Apr. 16-17 Lumberjack Relays

220 224 224 227 233


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March 30, 2006

UTPA Broncs wrap up March on hot streak By JORGE HINOJOSA The Pan American The University of Texas-Pan American baseball team is showing how much it wants to win, in the midst of a four-game winning streak. The winning streak started March 21 in San Marcos when the Broncs defeated Texas State University 4-1. They swept the Bobcats in a two-game series before arriving in Corpus Christi to compete against the Islander. UTPA also did some sweeping, defeating the Islanders 10-3 and 8-3. “They have been practicing hard, they have been playing hard, and the key is pitching,” said coach Willie Gawlik. “When you pitch well and you play good defense, it gives you a chance to win any game, and for the most part we have been doing that. We have been getting some hitting too, so we’ve been doing all three really well.” In the last game against Texas State, junior pitcher Ricky Ibarz had a tremendous performance, striking out 14 batters giving him a season total of 76 strikeouts, and improving his record to 3-3. “He’s been throwing really well, giving us a chance to win, his last two or three outings have been really outstanding,” said Gawlik of the Venezuelan transfer. The Broncs improve their record to 15-17 on the year allowing them to tie their number of wins from last year’s disappointing 15-38 season. Before the four-game winning streak Little Rock Arkansas’ well renowned team swept the Broncs. This perhaps kicked off the determination that led to the team’s favorable play. “We have played a real tough schedule, since the beginning of the season we played TCU, Texas, Arkansas, which are all high-quality teams, when you play those high-quality teams and then you play other teams like we’ve been playing that are not in the big 12 it helps us,” said Gawlik. “It’s helped our pitchers, they have pitched against some of the best in the nation, so

it has improved their skills, and it’s helped our hitters because we saw some of the best pitching in the nation. Defensively it’s the same thing, we had to make great plays against good hitters.” Leading the Broncs at the plate in batting average is senior Louie Alamia who has a .361 average. In the last four games Alamia has put together a fantastic ratio in the batters box, totaling 10 hits in 18 at bats, upping his batting average from .327. Second and third on the batting average list are Abraham Garcia and Leighton Autrey, with .345 and .313, respectively. Alamia also leads the team with 22 runs scored, and the outfielder was named Division I Independent player of the week on Tuesday. Alamia is in the top 10 of Independent rankings for many categories, including batting average, at-bats, hits, runs scored, total bases, and walks. Alamia leads the Broncs with 43 hits, 12 more than Osiel Flores who has 31. Alamia is also is first on the team with three triples. The Independent Player of the Week is voted on by Sports Information Directors NCAA Independent institutions. Blake Whittlesey and T.J. Gilmer both have five stolen bases to lead the team. Whittlesey has been caught once, and Gilmer has been caught twice. Leading the team in home runs is Patrick Brooks with four, coming in second for the team is Brady Honeycutt with two. “One thing that happening is that it has not been one guy, it’s been a different guy stepping up and getting a big hit every game, or a big bunt down, or the pitchers stepping up, its not one guy, it’s a lot of guys that are doing the job,” said Gawlik about his team’s effort. For the pitchers Tim Haines has a 1.71 ERA in 18 appearances with six saves. Ibarz has a 2.87 ERA in 53.1 innings pitched, the most innings pitched for the team. Dane Mason comes in second with 47.2 innings pitched earning 34 strikeouts; he also leads the team with seven hit batters. “He’s [Ibarz] kept us right in there in the ball

Onydia Garza/ The Pan American LOOKING UP - First baseman Blake Whittlesey tosses one during practice Wednesday.

game, and Dane Mason’s done the same thing in the last couple outings he’s had, pitching keeps you in the game,” said Gawlik. Monday the Broncs had a short light practice under the sunless sky after a pleasing weekend. They took some batting practice, worked a little defense, stretched out, and the pitchers did some conditioning. “Tomorrow we’ll be back to our regular practice schedule,” said Gawlik.

The Broncs will then prepare to take flight to Oregon State University, where they will play on Friday, March 31, striving to improve their existing record, hopefully reaching the .500 mark for games won. “We’re working hard to do that, if we keep playing like we have been playing in the last few days we can reach those goals, we have a tough schedule ahead of us, but that’s what got us to improve so much,” said Gawlik.

Lady Bronc senior Sloan reflects on collegiate tennis career By FERNANDO MARTINEZ PECHS The Pan American

UTPA Athletic Department WHAT’S THE RACQUET? - Senior Elysia Sloan will conclude her UTPA career this season.

Lady Bronc Elysia Sloan is participating in her last tennis season, as she will graduate with a degree in international business in May. Sloan has been part of the Bronc tennis program for four years, obtaining an overall record of 19-36 in singles competition. She is a native of Duncanville, and began playing her sport at the age of 12. Her father played an enormous part in her dedication to tennis, and motivated her to participate in college competition. “My dad has played the biggest role in my tennis career. He demanded a lot from me, and pushed me to do my best every time I played,” Sloan commented. “I remember that he would make me go to practice, when I didn’t want to. I started my tennis career kind of late. In high school tennis was real big for me, since I did well I was offered a scholarship to play for UTPA.”

The University of Texas-Pan American gave her the opportunity to study and compete for the tennis squad back in 2002. For her, coming to the Rio Grande Valley was a totally new experience she will never forget.

Q “I started my tennis career kind of late. ” -Elysia Sloan UTPA women’s tennis

“It took me some time to get used to the Hispanic culture. Here, people are really warm and friendly. It is totally different than Dallas,” she said. Throughout Sloan’s college tennis career, she has faced many tribulations with the inconsistency in the tennis program. In her four years as a lady Bronc, she had four coaches. “In college is hard to adjust to several

coaches, and It is not a consistent base. Coach [Robert] Hubbard’s consistency has motivated me to finish my year hard. It looks like coach will stay in the program for a long time,” she said. Sloan remembers with humor one tennis match that she struggled to win. This game was played in Corpus Christi in 2005 and she will never forget the embarrassing instance. “My opponent was acting real rude and difficult. I could not handle it anymore, and I called her a bad name. Since this was the last game in courts, everyone noticed. I was so embarrassed,” she said. She wishes to thank Coach Robert Hubbard for his dedication in UTPA’s tennis program. “Coach Hubbard is an enormous role model. He has a great care for the game. I am so pleased to be coached by him.” The Lady Broncs will go back to action April 1 as they will host Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.


March 30, 2006

SPORTS

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Track: good show at Texas Invite By DARYL GONZALES The Pan American The University of Texas-Pan American track and field teams set some good marks at the Texas Invitational this past weekend. It was the men’s long distance runners who set the pace, as senior Westly Keating displayed a familiar performance en route to winning the 3,000-meter run. His running showcased at the state capital not only garnered him the gold, but his time of 7:58.87 bested his old school record. The nearest competitor, Shadrack Songok of Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, finished 12 seconds behind the Valley native, who set a record for best time at the Mike A. Meyers Track and Field Complex. Also landing themselves a top-ten finish were David Trevino and Hector Gandara. Trevino’s time of 3:58.03 in the 1,500-meter race had him crossing the finish line in third place overall. Finishing eighth with a time of 8:50.03 in the 3,000 meters was Gandara. J.J. Hernandez placed eighth overall in the 2,000-meter steeplechase with a time of 5:56.36. Also taking home a top-ten finish was David Sanchez in the 400-meter dash with a time of 50.99 good for 10th. Raymondville native Matt Clinton placed

sixth with his throw of 159-3 in the hammer throw event. For the women, freshman Wendy Wells finished third and succeeded in surpassing the school record in the javelin throw, in her first ever collegiate meet. A throw of 146-6 exceeded the previous 143-2 mark that was the old school record. In the women’s shot put event, Amanda Ferris’ throw of 43-3 placed her fifth overall. Ferris and Michelle Elizondo notched second and fifth place finishes in the hammer throw with marks of 160-9 and 135-2, respectively. Liliana Cavazos finished third in the triple jump with a leap of 37-7.50, and notched a 11th place finish in the long jump with a jump of 176.75. A time of 12.02 from Deon Marquis in the 100-meter dash placed her fifth, while she timed in at 24.67 in the 200-meters, good for seventh. In the distance events, junior Karla Hernandez captured a fourth-place finish in the 3,000-meter run with a time of 10:32.47, while Ashley Perez finished eighth in of 10:47.14. The Broncs and Lady Broncs will be back on the track and field April 1 when they travel to the University of Houston for the Tom Tellez Invitational.

Final Four a cinderalla story By RODERICK DORSEY The Pan American The field of 65 teams in the 2006 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament has now been shrunken down to four teams, with a national championship on the line Monday. One thing can be said about this year’s participants—each team has a glaring attribute. UCLA represents hard-nosed defense, while LSU brings an athletic team to the RCA Dome in Indianapolis, site of the Final Four. Florida has size and depth similar to championship teams of the past. George Mason has the scrappiness and determination of a team poised for a title. But there are two facts about this tournament that validate its claim as one for the ages. For the first time since 1980 (and only the second time in NCAA tournament history), no number one seed will represent any of the four regions at the Final Four. Another stunning detail to this year’s March Madness is the Cinderella story known as George Mason University. The Patriots, a Colonial Athletic Association at-large representative, took on teams of Goliath stature in the tournament (Michigan State in the first round, North Carolina in the second, and Connecticut in the regional finals). They were successful at knocking off each program despite opponents’ glamorous history (they have won seven national championships combined). A Hollywood fairy-tale such as this one has raised the eyebrows of sports fans, and even intrigued those who rarely keep up with the game of basketball. Michelle Avila, a student at the University of TexasPan American, was touched when she heard of the news about GMU making it all the way to the Final Four.

“I’m happy for them,” said Avila. “I always root for the underdog, because no one expects them to win against these better teams. When they do win, they win over the hearts of all people pulling for the little guys.” Success by underdog teams like George Mason can be used as motivation by college teams playing in smaller conferences that don’t get the recognition they might deserve. National exposure is minimal for mid-major teams, because television network time for college basketball games is bought up by the super conferences, like the ACC, SEC, Big Ten and Big 12. “With George Mason making it this far, it serves as an inspiration for schools like UTPA or UTSA, who have basketball teams that very few people know anything about,” says Avila. “It’s not all about just the UT (Texas) Longhorns of the world. A smaller school now can feel that they have a chance against a bigger one.” Whether or not George Mason can continue its glory road to a national championship berth and win will be determined in the first national semifinal game on Saturday, when the Pats take on the Florida Gators. In the other semifinal, the LSU Tigers will battle the UCLA Bruins. Both LSU Tigers’ programs (men and women’s) will be battling in the Final Four, each with heavy hearts. With Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath devastating the Gulf Coast, their minds will be set on giving the survivors of last summer’s tragedy something to smile about and be proud of. “I hope LSU wins it all,” says Mohammed Zaidi, a graduate of the University of Houston at Clear Lake. “They represent the state of Louisiana like the New England Patriots represented our country as a whole after Sept. 11.”

Joel de la Rosa / The Pan American FLYING HIGH - Kate Shannon takes flight during practice Wednesday.

GOT TIPS?

ALAMIA continued from page 16 wear my hat on top of his when I'm getting ready to go to the on-deck circle, and I must touch Coach Alamo's ear lobe once for luck, just to name a few.” From his freshman season to his senior campaign, Alamia has grown physically and mentally as a player, and along the way he has learned a lot that has contributed to his game. “I have learned that baseball is a game that doesn't owe anybody anything,” said Alamia, when asked what he has learned. “If you work hard day in and day out then you will be ready when your number is called to make a big play. We need to know that we can't play forever so we should play every game as if it's going to be our last.” With his senior season well on its way to a finish, Alamia should be able to look back on his years at UTPA with satisfaction. To him, his number isn't up yet, and there is so much more to be accomplished this year not only by himself personally, but by his team as well. “I would like to see us win as many games left as possible and hopefully receive a bid to play in the regional tournament when May comes around,” commented Alamia. “We have a lot more talent this year than previous years. Our pitching has been great and above all we work together as a team, always staying positive and picking each other up as much as we can. As long as we continue to play the way we've been playing we will have the season that we set out to have.”

E-mail The Pan American ThePanAmerican@gmail.com


SPORTS

Clipboard..........................13 Baseball............................14 Track.................................15

Alamia out to make senior season count

By RACHEL REIDA The Pan American Striving to become the best, diamond man Louie Alamia, senior outfielder for the University of TexasPan American Bronc baseball team, has done just about all that he can do during his tenure here at UTPA. Coming off his freshman season as the first freshman All-American ever to grace UTPA athletics,

Joel de la Rosa / The Pan American STANDING STRONG - Senior Alamia puts together notable season to conclude UTPA career.

Alamia has continued to work hard and is determined to leave UTPA as the best. “After receiving the honor,” proclaimed Alamia, “my eyes were open to many more possibilities that I had in store for me. That was the first time I believed that I could possibly one day play professional baseball.” Currently leading the Broncs in batting average at .361, Alamia has consistently batted over .300 for the past three seasons, making him somewhat of a team leader. “I honestly don't think much about that sort of thing,” said Alamia when asked about his team leadership. “I know that this year though we have a great bunch of guys on the team, and a great camaraderie with one another. Guys have really stepped it up on the mound, the field and at bat, and as long as we continue to do that we will be successful once it is all over.” As a resident of the Rio Grande Valley who graduated from Edinburg North, Alamia had to transition from high school to Division I baseball, luckily with the help and support of his family and friends. “The only difference from high school baseball to Division I baseball was accepting the transition and adjusting to the speed/tempo of the game,” Alamia said. “What's really helped me the most, staying here and playing in my hometown is that I have my family and friends here to watch me play.”

Playing any kind of Division I sport takes a great amount of hard work, discipline, and inspiration. Alamia has always gone to his family for this, they are his backbone, especially his father, also named Louie. “My father has been the biggest inspiration in my life,” exclaimed Alamia. “He’s not only taught me about sports, but ever since I was a little boy he has instilled in me great family morals and values. He has always been there to lead me to a right path whenever I would drift away. I thank God every day for blessing me with loving parents and a wonderful sister.” As his senior year continues, Alamia, as well as the rest of the Bronc baseball team, have experienced some ups and downs.

“We have a great bunch of guys on the team, and a great camaraderie with one another...” -Louie Alamia UTPA Bronc baseball

Currently 15-17 on the season, and battling to recover from an early season knee sprain, Alamia has set many goals for himself as well as for the team. “I am content with the way we've been playing

thus far,” commented Alamia. “Our record doesn't show the type of team that we have and we know that. We've all had our ups and downs throughout the season, but we've always fought and we have never quit!” “As far as his knee injury goes there are some days where it may aggravate me more than others. But once game time comes I put it all behind me and play the best I can.” And play he does, Alamia recently accomplished a new feat in becoming UTPA's all time leader in triples with 13. He was also named Independent Player of the Week on Tuesday March 28. “I really didn't pay much attention at the time,” commented Alamia on the triples record. “But it makes me feel good to reach that feat.” Some of the things that Alamia does before a game are also some of the things that help him through it. Things like stretching with a fellow teammate, or playing catch are the small things that get him ready physically, but mentally, Similar to many other athletes, he suffers from superstition. “When I first started I didn't really have any rituals except for having a certain teammate help me stretch prior to the game,” blushed Alamia. “As the season has gone through I have increased some superstitious rituals before every game. I must listen to a certain CD on road games, I have Abraham (Garcia) stretch me before the game, I have Ruben (Shives)

See ALAMIA page 15

UTPA stays positive after shaky weekend outings Looking to bounce back strong from sub-par spring opening

By DULCE CRYSTAL MEDRANO The Pan American This weekend, The University of TexasPan American men’s and women’s tennis teams headed into competition. The men’s scheduled match against Texas A&M on Saturday was postponed, but they capturing a 4-3 victory the following day against Prairie View A&M. Senior Broncs Oliver Steil and Rehman Esmail were victorious, taking the match 8-4 over Luis Godoy and Jose Talavera, marking the first doubles point all semester for the Broncs. Teammates Nick Porter and Andrew Bost continued the progress with an 8-1 match over Andy Narido and Kuggai Chiridza. “We as seniors had to step it up,” said Steil, a kinesiology major. Prairie View’s Xavier Godoy and David Herrera then handed UTPA’s Enrique Montemayor and Danny Farias an 8-1 loss. In singles clashes, Porter defeated Chiridza 6-4, 6-3, and Esmail captured the last two sets 7-6 (7-5) and 6-3 over Narido after a 6-3 downfall in the first set. Montemayor, Bost and Farias dropped their single matches,

putting the Broncs on a 3-2 count, but Steil turned things around and captured a 5-7, 7-6, 7-3 and 6-2, breaking match point twice en route to the victory. “It was our first win (in doubles), it was pretty exciting,” said the 23-year-old Steil as he recalled Sunday’s match. “It’s more like a mental game. If you go in with a negative attitude, you’ll lose.” On the women’s side, the Lady Broncs split their weekend journey, as they were downed by Houston 7-0 on Saturday but took a win over Prairie View A&M due to forfeit. In the first flight, Nicole Garcia and Silke Buksik suffered an 8-1 loss to Lady Cougars Loli Gomez and Sonja Nikolic. Elysia Sloan and Sheila Mabulac then suffered the same fate as they were handed a 8-0 setback from Brianna Bateup and Vicky Simpson. In singles action, Buksik was defeated in a 6-2, 6-1 decision by Gomez, while Garcia was beaten 6-1, 6-0 by Bateup in the second flight. Garcia said that part of the problem was a slow start. “At first we were intimidated,” she said. “But we held around and showed that we can

hang with them.” In the third flight, Nikolic was victorious in a 6-1, 6-2 match against Sloan, and Mabulac lost in straight sets to Miller, 6-0 and 6-0. Despite this weekend’s outcome, UTPA tennis head coach Robert Hubbard was very proud of both teams. “ T h e i n d i v i d u a l matchups came out almost the same way I wanted to,” said Hubbard. “Both of those matches (Steil and Esmail) showed they were seniors.” According to Hubbard, the last couple of years have been inconsistent; the seniors have gone through four coaches A GRACEFUL RETURN -

already. The Broncs will host The University of Texas-Arlington on Sunday, while the Lady Broncs host Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Saturday.

Onydia Garza / The Pan American Freshman Sheila Mabulac returns a volley.


March 30, 2006