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RANGER THE

March 27, 2009

Serving San Antonio College and the Alamo Community College District

Volume 83, Issue 19

Identity in crisis

Single copies free

A forum of free voices

District colleges clone curriculum Page 5

Blackboard Vista Recession frustrations continue hits home Page 6

Page 7

Theater department mimics MoliĂŠre Page 9


2 • March 27, 2009

Officials Chancellor: Dr. Bruce H. Leslie 201 W. Sheridan, Bldg. B, San Antonio, TX 78204-1429 Work: 485-0020 Fax: 208-8149 E-mail: bleslie@mail.accd.edu District 1: Dr. Bernard Weiner 929 Manor Drive, Ste. 7, San Antonio, TX 78228 Work: 735-9151 E-mail: bweinermd@satx.rr.com District 2: Denver McClendon 3811 Willowwood Blvd., San Antonio, TX 78219 Work: 281-9141 E-mail: denvermcclendon@satx.rr.com District 3: Anna Bustamante 511 Ware Blvd., San Antonio TX 78221 Work: 882-1603 Fax: 927-4557 E-mail: abustamante20@mail.accd.edu District 4: Marcelo S. Casillas 115 Wainwright, San Antonio, TX 78211 Home: 922-6815 Fax: 923-3167 E-mail: mcasillas19@mail.accd.edu District 5: Roberto Zárate 4103 Buffalo Bayou, San Antonio, TX 78251 Phone: Not available E-mail: rzarate11@mail.accd.edu District 6: Dr. Gene Sprague 14722 Iron Horse Way Helotes, TX 78023 Work: 567-5544 Fax: 520-9185 E-mail: sprague@uthscsa.edu District 7: Charles Conner 13306 Hunters Hollow, San Antonio, TX 78230 Home: 493-7176 Fax: 493-7909 E-mail: cconner8@mail.accd.edu District 8: Gary Beitzel 15403 Forest Mist, San Antonio, TX 78232 Home: 496-5857 E-mail: gbeitzel@accd.edu District 9: James A. Rindfuss 109 Laburnum, San Antonio, TX 78209 Home: 828-4630 Work: 375-2555 Home Fax: 832-8292 Office Fax: 375-0301 E-mail: jrindfus@mail.accd.edu

Presidents San Antonio College, Dr. Robert E. Zeigler 486-0959, rzeigler@mail.accd.edu Northeast Lakeview College, Dr. Eric Reno 486-5484, ereno@mail.accd.edu Northwest Vista College, Dr. Jacqueline Claunch 486-4900, jclaunch@mail.accd.edu Palo Alto College, Dr. Ana M. “Cha” Guzman 486-3960, aguzman@mail.accd.edu St. Philip’s College, Dr. Adena W. Loston 486-2900, aloston@mail.accd.edu

Online When you see this symbol, go to www.theranger.org for more info.

Services offered for prospective teachers Documentary sheds light on migrants’ struggles Volleyball team looks forward Click on videos on The Ranger home page for more on the ROTC’s training for the Bataan Death March and the International Women’s Day March.

www.theranger.org • The Ranger

Man tampering with newspapers flees By Trey Randolph Librarian John Deosdade was walking through the hall on the third floor of Moody Learning Center about 2:30 p.m. Monday when he noticed someone kneeling by one of The Ranger newspaper racks and shuffling a stack of papers. When Deosdade got closer, he noticed the man was inserting a flier into each copy of the newspaper. When asked what he was doing, the man told Deosdade that he was putting fliers in all the newspapers for an organization for which he works called Project Quest, a city funded program for job training. Deosdade asked him if he had been given permission to insert the fliers, and the man said yes. He explained he worked for the program, which is sponsored by the city. Deosdade then explained to him that the city had nothing to do with The Ranger and again asked if he had obtained permission from The Ranger to insert the fliers. “I didn’t think I had to,” was his response.

Deosdade then asked for his name and the man refused to answer, walking away and saying he would go get permission from The Ranger. “I told him he should have asked first,” Deosdade said. No one appeared at The Ranger seeking permission. Newspapers charge for advertising, including inserts. Journalism Instructor Susan Merkner, who handles advertising for the college newspaper, said an insert to run in all copies districtwide would cost $350. To run as a quarter-page advertisement, it would be $195. Journalism-photography Chair Marianne Odom filed a police report with the district’s department of public safety to have a record of the incident on file. Inserting advertising into The Ranger without paying is theft of services, Odom said. A similar incident occurred in March 2007 when about 50 fliers concerning plagiarism and a district instructor accused of plagiarism, were inserted in issues of The Ranger without permission.

Tyler Cleveland

Security: Police were called to the cafeteria in Loftin Tuesday and Wednesday. Neither the police nor Selrico would comment on the incidents.

President ready to select executive vice president By Brianna Roberts Faculty Senate met Wednesday in closed session with Dr. Robert Zeigler, president of this college, to discuss his choice for executive vice president. Zeigler said Tuesday he isn’t ready to release his choice to the public, so he requested an executive session.

After the meeting, English Professor Jane Focht-Hansen told The Ranger that the meeting was positive but preliminary. Faculty Senate Chair Paula McKenna said that Zeigler is not allowed to call a closed meeting, but he could request that it is closed, meaning that only senators are allowed in. “I’ve already talked to the

Blotter San Antonio College March 5 – An individual reported theft of personal property in Moody. $50 to $500. An individual reported a suspicious male in the area of Nail. Male not located. An individual reported a male skateboarding on campus in the parking garage. March 6 – An individual reported feeling ill. EMS treated individual. An individual reported a suspicious male in the area of McAllister. Male not located. An individual reported found property. Item placed in property locker. March 7 – An individual reported a suspicious male. All found to be secure. March 16 – An officer assisted SAPD with offcampus theft. An individual reported theft of personal property in McCreless. $500 to $1,500. No suspects were located.

deans,” Zeigler said. After his conversation with the Faculty Senate, Zeigler is going to give his recommendation to Chancellor Bruce Leslie. After Leslie approves, Zeigler said he will make the selection public. Four candidates came to campus at the end of February and the beginning of March for open forums

found to be OK.

Contact Information Emergency 222-0911 General DPS 485-0099 Weather Line 485-0189

An individual reported found property. Item placed in property locker. March 6 – An individual reported suspicious males in the area of Ozuna. Males not located. An individual reported feeling ill. EMS treated individual. An individual reported an active fire alarm in campus center. All found to be secure. March 9 – An individual reported two suspicious males off campus. Males not located. An individual advised of protective order in the child development center. March 10 – An individual reported a suspicious male in the area of Palomino. Male not located.

An officer assisted individual with a vehicle problem in Lot 30.

March 11 – An individual reported a personal injury in Ozuna. Medical treatment refused.

An individual reported damage to district property in Lot 20.

March 16 – An individual reported a suspicious male in Lot 5. All found to be OK.

An individual reported two males arguing. All found to be OK.

St. Philip’s College

An individual reported theft of personal property in Moody. $50 to $500. No suspects were located. Palo Alto College March 5 – An individual reported an unconscious female in the social sciences building. EMS treated female.

March 9 – An individual reported personal vehicle burglary in Lot 6. No suspects were located. March 11 – An individual reported lost district keys. March 13 – An individual reported personal injury. Medical treatment refused. Officers assisted SAPD in locating a suspicious male. March 16 – An individual reported theft of district property. No suspects were located.

An officer assisted student in locating a vehicle in Lot 23.

An individual reported personal injury in Loftin. College nurse treated individual.

with employees and students. The candidates are Dr. Debra Morgan, dean of community development at Northwest Vista College; Jeanne Clerc, health sciences professor at Western Illinois University in Macomb and Moline; Michael Flores, the vice president of college services at Palo Alto College; and Dr. Jessica Howard, interim vice president at this college.

March 5 – An individual reported two males involved in a verbal disturbance in campus center. An individual reported witnessing a vehicle burglary in Lot 9. March 6 – An individual reported a female verbally assaulting him on the tennis court. Prosecution declined. March 8 – An individual reported lights in nursing education building turning off and on. All

St. Philip’s College - Southwest Campus March 5 – An individual reported damage to personal vehicle in Lot 5. Northwest Vista College March 5 – An individual reported missing personal property valued at $50. March 7 – An individual reported missing personal property in Mountain Laurel Hall. March 10 – An individual reported theft of district property in Cypress. $50 to $500. March 16 – An individual reported a suspicious male in the area of Lot 0. Male not located. An individual reported personal vehicle burglary in Lot 6. No suspects were located. An individual reported personal injury on the boardwalk. Campus nurse treated individual. Northeast Lakeview College March 5 – An individual reported suspicious male in Lot 0. Male not located. An individual reported feeling ill in academic building. Family member picked up individual. March 6 – An individual requested an officer while dealing with a non-ACC employee. All found to be OK. An individual reported found property. Item placed in property locker. March 9 – An individual reported found property. Item placed in property locker.


The Ranger • www.theranger.org

March 27, 2009 • 3

Student government protests tuition hike, urges students to take action By Henry A. Chavarria

An open forum Monday drew more than 40 students, two members of the League of United Latin American Citizens and the attention of local television news. The focus was on a 5 percent tuition hike for in-district students approved 5-4 by the board of trustees March 17. “Silence is compliance!” SGA President Julianne Cantu said as she urged students to voice their opinions against the seventh consecutive annual tuition hike. LULAC National Chief of Staff Angie Garcia said she believes that the tuition raise has come at a bad time for the community and on short notice. Registration for the fall semester usually begins in mid-April. “Today’s gathering is a good start, but we need to keep up the effort,” Garcia said. “This board doesn’t even think about the community. We need to have more public meetings so you can have your own input and the community can have input.”

With the help of SGA, Garcia said she looks forward to starting chapters of LULAC at all the colleges in the district. “One of the goals that the district has set this year is to be the best community college district in the nation,” Garcia said, but she stressed that the Alamo Community College District will never get to the top by raising tuition and making it impossible for students to enroll. Cantu said the Student Government Association of this college plans to go to the other district colleges beginning with St. Philip’s College for similar forums to raise awareness. Cantu said later that the forum for St. Philip’s had not been approved by that college yet. SGA Commissioner Vanessa Salinas is angry about the tuition increase because it may keep her from attending school next semester. Salinas said she has talked to many students since the hike for their opinions and for how it might affect their studies here.

“A lot of people didn’t even know. Some were under the impression it was going to happen and others simply said, ‘I can’t do anything about it,’” Salinas said. “Yes, you can. You can definitely do something about it. In the past, the board has raised tuition because everyone is under the impression that the district makes a decision and it’s final. Just because these men are in suits and have great salaries, it does not mean they can walk all over us,” Salinas said. “If we are going to rally, let’s do it now.” Students also expressed disappointment at the district spending money for a public relations company to design a new logo, which they characterized as just as plain as the current one. Cantu said this college has a great graphic design program and should use its own resources. “The district could have had a scholarship contest on who could design a better logo,” Cantu said. SGA closed the meeting with

Political science freshman Vanessa Salinas of the Student Government Association speaks at an open forum in Loftin on Monday about the tuition increase. Salinas defended the immediate action that the SGA took to fight against the tuition increase. an invitation for students to attend all SGA meetings to collaborate on changing the board vote on tuition increases. LULAC’s Garcia had a final message, “These things will always stay the

Community center offers to foot bill for GED test By Michelle Franco

The Seguir Adelante Community Center is offering vouchers to pay for GED tests for any individual who is prepared to take the test. “I know it is going to be so exciting,” Debbie Middleton, a continuing education specialist, said March 6. She is the point of contact at the Seguir Adelante Community Center for students to get scholarships to take the General Educational Development test. “It’s going to explode,” she said, “There are so many people in San Antonio that need this, and the fee is something that holds them back.” GED tests range from $90-$100, depending on the testing center. “It’s the difference between feeding your family for someone who cannot afford that,” Middleton said. In 2006, 25 percent of individuals 25 years or older who lived in Bexar County did not have a high school diploma. The center received about $22,000 from the Fabulous Holiday Brunch and GED Scholarship, a fundraiser in December started by Martha Tijerina, known as the

“First Lady of Spanish Television” and a member of the San Antonio Association of Hispanic Journalists. Tickets are sold to individuals or corporations, and part of the money from the tickets goes toward the scholarship. Individuals and corporations also donate money. “The main thing is that they have to be ready for the test,” Middleton said. “We don’t want to set them up for failure, and we want to spend the money wisely.” Already 30 people in the last month have applied for the scholarship, Middleton said. “We started getting people right away from the community. Our goal is to get them to get their GED and to get them to their next step,” Middleton said. To qualify for the scholarship, individuals must have passed a practice test. Practice tests are free and are offered in the community center. The GED test, however, will be offered at this college. Adolph Lopez, director of the assessment center, was waiting to get approval from the Texas Education Agency. Vouchers are accepted at

a testing center in San Antonio Independent School District, Northside Independent School District or North East Independent School District. GED testing centers have to be state-approved facilities. The test consists of five subject areas — math, social studies, science, reading and writing. “They need a GED to get a good job,” Middleton said. “They need a GED to move on to higher education. It gives them a lot more potential for workforce opportunities, as well as a self-esteem thing. It’s a major accomplishment.” The scholarship fund began in late January, and was spearheaded by Tijerina, along with a committee of women who are close friends. “They take classes and then don’t take the test,” Tijerina said. “We wanted to help those women at the very bottom of the ladder to take the GED test and get their certificate.” Middleton said her department encountered several women through the women’s center during the the past few years who needed a GED. This made center officials realize they would be a good source for distributing the funds.

The community center is also open for information for anyone interested in how to get started taking GED classes. If they need to take classes for free, individuals can be referred to City Learning Centers, community centers funded by the city. Individuals interested in the scholarship must first contact Middleton and come in to do an assessment to determine their goals. “That’s what is great about us,” she said, “If they want to continue their education after the GED, they are already in the right place.” The community center also offers counseling and information about financial aid. “We try to make it very streamlined if their goal is to go to college,” she said. Continuing on to college is not required for the GED scholarship. “We are here to help,” Middleton said. The Seguir Adelante Community Center is at Evergreen and Howard streets on this college’s campus. For more information, call 486-1454.

Departments make do with budget cuts By Trey Randolph Academic departments across the college are having to make do after the Feb. 16 cuts of 30 percent from each department’s budget. During a Feb. 12 department chairs meeting, college President Robert Zeigler gave chairs the option of cutting back on summer classes, having summer classes taught by adjunct adjunct or giving up 30 percent of the departments’ current budgets to enable the district to pay regular faculty payroll during summer classes. Foreign languages Chair Anna Budzinski, whose department has taken up residence in the new academic instruction center opened last fall, hands out business cards with her new location taped over the out-of-date information. Her department can’t afford to print new cards for the faculty. Media services Chair Barbara Knotts said her department is cutting back by “being very selective about what we can do,” and “asking staff to give a very strong justification why they need certain items. “We are taking it on a day-by-day basis, hoping we can make it through,” she added. Knotts said the department has not seen any major equipment failures and is hoping no major failures occur because of the high cost of cameras and other equipment. She said her staff is working with vendors with whom they have a long history to obtain the best prices possible, and the few things they have ordered have been purchased for a good price. Mary Lou Russell, music and humanities interim chair, said the cuts left many people feeling “like a deer in the headlights,” and was unsure of how her department will survive the rest of the semester.

New information is taped over old on business cards. “We’re just figuring that we’ve got enough to get by,” she said. Departments are feeling the cuts across campus, but some rely on less equipment and fewer high-dollar items than others, making the cuts somewhat easier than in equipment- and supplyheavy departments. Business Chair Val Calvert said her department is running “lean and mean” right now, attempting to save costs wherever possible and making sure to “stay on top of things to ensure not going over” budget. She said her faculty is trying to stretch supplies to save money and added small steps, such as not using the copy machine if it is not imperative, help meet the budget restrictions. Calvert “tried to look at the organization overall and the needs of the organization,” putting those needs above that of her department. Calvert compared meeting the department budget with a personal budget, saying sometimes you simply must focus on what you need and not necessarily what you want. “We’re all working for the same goals and objectives, so I just look at the bigger picture,” she said. “Each cutback does affect us, but I think in

Tyler Cleveland

the end that we will reach our goals.” Jeff Hunt, theater and speech communication chair, said his department is also cutting back on printing as much as possible. Hunt said every syllabus is on PALS, and he encourages teachers to put as many assignments online as possible to save copying costs. He said the department is still print-heavy because of posters, tickets and programs, but smaller programs are being designed and the department is trying to obtain or make costumes as cheaply as possible. Hunt, who also serves as the chair of Chairs Council, said departments need to identify “where can we streamline and cut even more” while still providing quality education expected of the college. Ellen Marshall, early childhood education chair, said her department has not been impacted thanks to a grant it received three years ago. “Fortunately, we are on the fourth year of a four-year grant received from the Department of Education,” Marshall said. “The grant mostly funds parents to stay in school, provided subsidized child care.” The department has also been able to fill staff positions in the childcare center to keep up with required teacher-to-children ratios, travel to childcare conferences and maintain supplies, Marshall said. “If we didn’t have that outside money from the grant, we would be in trouble,” Marshall added. She said the grant runs through September, and the department is in the process of reapplying. Competition will be stiff, she said, but the department anticipates the grant will be renewed. Brianna Roberts contributed to this story.

same if we stay the same; we must get involved.” SGA meetings are at 2 p.m. every Monday in the craft room of Loftin. Fo r m o re i n f o r m a t i o n , c a l l 486- 0667.

Writing center adds Second Life for online tutoring By Vanessa M. Sanchez Director Frances Crawford said Second Life, the online tutoring social network, is another advantage offered to students and faculty and the latest addition to the writing center. Second Life targets online students and those with a tight schedule; it is identical to face-to-face tutoring because of its abilities. Adding to the assistance of the new writing center, such as help with essays, grammar, sentence structure and MLA, Second Life is a social network controlled by tutors from writing centers worldwide and available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Crawford said all students need to download the program at esmgFor more information, sl.com, which call 486-1433. stands for education server management group in Second Life. Teachers will have access to student assistance items. For example, a student can create a virtual note card to post a paper and receive help from a tutor; this way, a student can be at home and still receive help through chat. Tutors also can pull items from a “virtual inventory” list, such as a PowerPoint Presentation, to better explain questions. Virtual dry erase boards, where students and tutors can converse online and explain questions, are also available. Tutors can pull up as many boards as needed to describe one’s errors or answer questions visually. Crawford said tutors can have more than one session at a time to better serve those online; they also can have private conversations, where those online surrounding the group will not be able to hear, if they chose. Much like being in an actual tutoring session, classrooms are also available where the tutor can sit next to a student. This college, however, is not the only one to use this server, Crawford said. Many universities use the server; there can be from 70,000 to 100,000 surfers worldwide at any given moment. On the site, there is also a virtual library for those being tutored to do research. Crawford said even though it is a controlled environment, people do need to be at least 18 to sign up. Though it is used as a tutoring site, Second Life has other uses. There surfers can “fly” to an island called France and see the Eiffel Tower or to another named Edgar Allan Poe and see what it would be like to be in one of his poems. There are also live music and watch movie showings. “There’s really almost nothing you can’t do there,” Crawford said. She also said the difference between Second Life and the real world “is in the real world, you can’t TP (teleport) yourself home.” To register, students need to make an hour-long appointment with the writing center. The hour is requested to create the account and an avatar while they learn the basics, such as transferring documents to the virtual lab and teleporting themselves. Crawford advises those who register to use their own first name for that avatar, then choose a last name, and make sure to make note of it. The program is a server that can only be used on campus computers but can be placed onto a flash drive to use elsewhere.


4 • March. 27, 2009

People

www.theranger.org • The Ranger Melissa Toscano Lazcano

Animal

rights:

Architecture sophomore Eder Davila asks Barbie Medrano, elementary teaching freshman, to sign the Peta2 petition against unnecessary cruelty to animals Wednesday in the mall. Davila has been a vegan for four years.

Tyler Cleveland

Book mover: Ward North American Moving Co. employees Bryan Anders and Sonya Garcia stock book shelves Tuesday on the fourth floor of the library in Moody. The third floor will be renovated to include new paint and study rooms.

Tyler Cleveland

Color contrast:

Pre-pharmacy sophomore Taglia Trevino looks at test tubes held by physical and natural science sophomore Leo Valdez during their chemistry lab with Professor John Paparelli in chemistry and geology Tuesday.


The Ranger • www.theranger.org

March 27, 2009 • 5

Faculty: Curriculum alignment ignores college differences By Brianna Roberts The district is instituting a curriculum alignment, and some faculty are raising concerns about it. The curriculum alignment initiative is designed to create consistency among the courses at each college, and the hope is that it will make for easier transfer between colleges. “Although the idea is a good one, there seems to be no appreciation of differences and unique needs across the independently accredited within the district,” Tom Billimek, chair of the psychology department, said. The psychology department is facing some difficulty because, unlike at the other campuses, this college demands college reading and writing as a prerequisite to any psychology course and general psychology to most of the sophomore-level classes. “Because of their independent accreditation, the faculty at each of the ACCD colleges have the responsibility of managing their curriculum,” Billimek said. He emphasized that he did not think this college was better than the other colleges, merely different. According to the Southern Association of Schools and Colleges, the curriculum is a responsibility of the faculty at that college. “If a student takes a general psychology course at any of the colleges, they should be able to get the same course,” Billimek said. “But the way this has been handled basically puts the colleges against each other.” This college’s psychology department is geared toward students being able to transfer and do well in the courses they take at a four-year institution. The current transfer arrangement that this college’s psychology department has with the University of Texas at San Antonio says that UTSA will accept PSYC 2372, Theories of Learning, but only from this college. When curriculum alignment was first brought up, Billimek e-mailed psychology departments at UTSA, Texas A&M-Kingsville, Texas State University-San Marcos, University of Texas at Austin and Texas A&M at College Station and asked what lowering the reading standards and not requiring general psychology would do to the transferability of this college’s students. The answer that he got back from all of them was that it would hurt student transferability. “We’ve built our curriculum around these standards,” psychology Professor Pam Hill said. Because of the terminology, it’s very difficult to find a textbook that is lower than college-level

reading and all of the psychology teachers have built writing assignments into their class. “We all have writing assignments to teach the students APA format,” Hill said. Hill said that the teachers simply don’t have time to teach the students to be good writers and get through all of their material, so the students have to come into the classroom with a good grasp on reading and writing. When curriculum alignment was first proposed, the faculties were told that while consistency was crucial, there was room for differences. “There isn’t a lot of room for uniqueness,” English Chair Alex Bernal said. “What started out as something normal has turned into homogenization without regard for uniqueness.” Bernal pointed out that he asked Kristine Clark, vice chancellor for academic success, at a Faculty Senate meeting how many students actually attended multiple campuses and she did not have an answer for him. Bernal said that he repeated his question to Chancellor Bruce Leslie, who also did not have an answer. “I don’t want any students to have a problem but why change the curriculum for 50,000 students (if only a few attend multiple campuses)?” Bernal asked. The English department is being asked to lower the reading requirements from READ 0303 to READ 0302. However, the English department conducted an in-depth study of their students and found that students who completed READ 0303 had almost as good of a chance at completing ENGL 1301 as a student who started out in ENGL 1301. Now, Bernal wants the district to approve using this college’s English department as a test group to see if the READ 0303 standard really will help students. “If it doesn’t make a difference, we’ll lower our standards,” Bernal said This college is not the only college that is upset about the curriculum alignment. On March 2 the Faculty Senate at Northwest Vista College sent Chancellor Bruce Leslie a memorandum that stated, “The process used by the Alamo Community College District (ACCD) to align the core curriculum for the five colleges was fundamentally at odds with basic principles governing independently accredited institutions.” Despite the frustration that the faculty has run into with the curriculum alignment, there are positives. “I think that overall it’s been a good process,” Robert Zeigler, president of this college, said. “It’s encouraged faculty to talk about curriculum.”

Jose Castillo

Sociology Professor David Edwards poses with the eight-speed Adhon folding bike that will go to a student who creates the winning recruiting poster for the Sociology Club. Edwards bought the bike for $500.

Art contest to award folding bicycle for poster

By Krystina Hodge The sociology department here is going green, thinking of new ways to promote itself, even if it means giving to receive. Sociology Professor David Edwards came up with the idea and hopes to attract attention and increase enrollment to the department by catching students’ interests and displaying their skills. The department is awarding a recycled eightspeed Dahon folding bike to a student who creates the best recruiting poster for the sociology department. “A lot more people are riding bikes than driving and riding the bus,” Edwards said. “It’s great exercise, safe and ecological.” The bike is lighter and smoother than most, with speed around about 35 mph. Gloria Pimentel, chair of the sociology depart-

For more information contact dedwards1@mail. accd.edu. ment, hopes to engage students in promoting and awareness of the program and to see more artists show off their talents. “The poster can possibly be used for future displays and exhibits,” Pimentel said. The contest is open to students interested in displaying art skills for a cause. The contest will end at noon April 17 and be judged by architecture Professor Michael Connor, biology Professor Robyn McGilloway and visual arts Professor Liu Qing.


www.theranger.org • The Ranger

6• March 27, 2009

Student frustration with Blackboard Vista continues File photo

Sporadic shutdowns and accessibility problems also hinder faculty.

By Vanessa M. Sanchez Jennifer Moyes, liberal arts sophomore, who normally does not take online classes, said she has experienced combinations of problems from the district’s learning management system. The district was scheduled to transfer to Blackboard Vista from Web CT this semester because they found Blackboard Vista was a better and easier server to work with. Moyes said the district has changed systems many times to simplify it, making it equivalent to telling teachers: “We think you’re educated enough to teach your students, but we don’t think you’re educated enough to learn the system,” she said. She also said that by changing the system, the district is wasting money on things it does not need. Moyes said Blackboard Vista is not always available. Once within two days, she received three e-mails warning the system would be down. She said the district change is forcing professors to move their information to a system that is flawed, which does not make sense. She said she has come to school when her computer at home was down to use Blackboard only to find that it was down on campus as well. Moyes said the district should not be spending money on something that does not work and questions how the district could expect students to trust officials to fix problems in Blackboard when PALS, the district portal, doesn’t work efficiently, either. The restricted hours on PALS are a particular concern to students who frequently are squeezing classes and homework in between jobs and families. With all the money spent on Blackboard Vista, Moyes said, “It’s like buying a car that doesn’t work.” Her solution: Let professors use their own Web sites or online resources, such as chat and Instant Messenger, to teach because those are something students are familiar with. Yazmin Hernandez, business administration sophomore, said one of the main problems of Blackboard Vista is the inability of those in charge to fix problems. Hernandez, who only takes online classes, said her professors often had to extend deadlines,

which could hurt her grades and result in postponing her intended graduation date. A mother of two, Hernandez said she goes to work after her children are asleep and has struggled with logging onto PALS. Once she had to wait almost 15 minutes for the login to begin working. Another problem Hernandez had was the continuous change of times Blackboard Vista was scheduled to be available. She said she has taken online classes since fall 2007 and never had a problem until now. Hernandez also said if the problems continue, she will no longer sign up for classes; she is questioning summer courses, but she needs only three more classes to transfer to Texas A&M University. Hernandez said the problems with the system started in the beginning of her Flex I session this semester. Faculty are no more happy with Blackboard Vista. Dr. David Wood, professor of astronomy, teaches online courses and said he fought against Blackboard Vista. “I’m not negative about Blackboard Vista; it’s a great program. It’s just not ideal to me and my students.” He also said it works wonders for many but causes more problems for him and his students. Wood said with his own Web page, he sees minimal problems, but “with Blackboard Vista, it puts up another layer between me and the students.” He said he is afraid and concerned Blackboard Vista will cause so many problems for students that they may develop a negative feeling toward it and not want to try online classes again. He said it leads to soaring drop-fail-withdraw rates and makes teachers look bad. Because Blackboard Vista is so slow, Wood said he has had to learn ways around the system, saying, “When there’s a problem with my Web page, I can fix them quick.” Wood, who has used Blackboard Vista in the past, said things got in the way then and said: “In my case, I find it will be more of a hindrance than a help.” He also said: “Every professor should be able to teach his or her course the way they want to. It (Blackboard Vista) should be an option, not a requirement.” Among the many problems students and teachers have encountered, Dr. Thomas Cleary, vice chancellor for planning, performance and information systems, said Blackboard Vista is in an operational, stable environment now.

Chancellor Bruce Leslie introduces Dr. Thomas Cleary, vice chancellor for planning, performance and information systems, at a welcoming ceremony in Killen Center April 15, 2008. Cleary said there was a problem with the server, which is believed to be in the vendor’s software. Wood said if Blackboard Vista turns out to be a positive system for him and his students, he will adjust. When a problem happens, Cleary said the district has to go through Presidium, a distance call site with experts on Blackboard Vista. At http://www.accd.edu/it/services/blackboard/student/get_started.html on the district’s Web site is a link to Presidium’s “support portal.” “We monitor Blackboard,” Cleary said. “We’re going to stay on a homestead until the problem is fixed and corrected.” Cleary said problems can happen at any moment, but there is a consistent watch on the server. He said the system is always in use and warnings are mentioned to inform students of when the server will be down. He said Blackboard Vista, compared to other servers, is a more reliable and mature leader among colleges. The choice to switch to Blackboard Vista was not of one person alone, Cleary said, but the decision of a group of faculty representing each college; their final agreement was to choose a single, dominant server. Cleary also said that no one server is flawless enough to please everyone and problems will occur on any server. Cleary said, in reference to having a wall

between them and the students, that advisers do not have the ability to fix SAC portal, or PALS, either, Blackboard Vista is the same. If a student is unsure about enrolling for an online course, there is a self-evaluation available at http://www.accd.edu/it/services/blackboard/ student/success_readiness.html. Cleary said students should take that test to see if they qualify for distance learning. Cleary said about online courses, “it’s not easier; it’s just different; it fits students’ life schedule.” There are also standard configurations a computer needs such as the amount of memory and the speed of the computer which help assist with Blackboard Vista. As Cleary said, a 10-year-old computer with basic standards won’t be best. He added: “We’re so pleased to be at this stage again and don’t want to disrupt anyone.” Psychology Professor Pamela Hill, who has been teaching online courses for about seven years now, supports the use of Blackboard Vista. Between her seven online classes, she has stumbled across conflicts through the server but said, through Blackboard Vista, teachers can tell what students are doing, similar to being in a classroom. She said: “Faculty shouldn’t have any fear of using Blackboard Vista.” It is a “learning management system” and has a lot of tools to help teach, deliver and manage class. She said it has the ability to post grades, return assignments and collect attendance as each person logs on. Hill said students have seven days to finish an exam and assignments and have understandable deadlines. “If you’re going to use technology, you should expect problems,” and during those periods, people have to be flexible, she said. Hill said the district wants to make online courses easier, saying, “We want to work toward all of our courses being unified.” “Personally, I think it’s the best.” It is easier for everyone to learn one, instead of many forms, she said. She also said it is unfair for students to perpetuate ways to find channels; however, teachers can link whatever site they prefer to use through Blackboard Vista. By spring 2010, all those teaching online classes must use Blackboard. A fast-track course is available to learn Blackboard, which takes several days, where the regular track takes five weeks.


The Ranger • www.theranger.org

Students worry recession will affect education

Lea Thompson

By Laura Garcia Some are calling it the worst recession since the 1930s. Wendy’s raised the price of their signature five-piece nuggets from 99 cents to $1.29. Radio advertisements market bartending jobs, calling the field “recession-proof.” The failing auto industry caused huge debate over tax bailouts late last year. With chains like Circuit City and Mervyn’s filing for bankruptcy and shutting doors for good, many others threaten to follow. The unstable economy has almost everyone questioning the stability and certainty of jobs. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported March 6 that the unemployment rate rose to 8.1 percent. Hispanics’ rate of unemployment is at 10.9 percent. Texas Workforce calls it a “national economic crisis” and warns of the negative impact it will have on the state’s economy. At press time, San Antonio is below the national average for unemployment at 6.3 percent. President Barack Obama signed a $7.9 billion economic stimulus bill into law last month that promises to save or create 3.5 million jobs over the next two years. In December, January and February, more than 600,000 jobs were lost each month. The U.S. Department of Commerce Web site calls the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act an “extraordinary response to a crisis unlike any since the Great Depression” and that it is an “unprecedented effort to jumpstart our economy.” The act includes $150 million to provide grants for economically distressed areas to create private sector jobs. This is probably in response to the 3.5 million Americans who lost their jobs in the last year. Dr. Cyril Morong, an economics

March 27, 2009 • 7

Public administration jobs safe bet in recession, program coordinator says By Giselle Guadron

Families leave a closeout sale at the Circuit City store at San Pedro Crossing Feb. 21. professor here, questions whether the stimulus is a fast enough response. Most of the government aid won’t go into effect until two years after the recession started. The National Bureau of Economic Research says the recession officially began in December 2007. According to their definition, a recession is defined as a significant decline in the economic activity lasting more than a few months and includes a decline in employment, real personal income, industrial production and wholesale-retail sales. President of the San Antonio Business and Economic Society, Mike Brell, describes the recession as an “uphill battle” and says his best advice for local residents is “to live within your means.” He feels confident that the country can get back on track. Business sophomore Beverly Gill calls the stimulus bill “short-term problem solving.” She said society has too much of a dependency on credit cards and people need to be more aware of their

money. Gill, an assistant purchasing manager for a recycling metal company, receives tuition reimbursements. About the current recession, she said, “It will affect me and how much I will have to afford school.” She said her company is letting go of temporary employees and contractors, and she is uncertain if companies will continue offering tuition reimbursements. Morong said, “Of course, I think education and a bachelor’s degree are still good investments. College graduates usually make, on average, about 70-80 percent more than high school graduates.” He said that college teaches students how to learn and that it will help them in the long run. Morong said, “Once you start working, start saving a regular amount each week or month. If you save $4,000 a year for 40 years and earn an annual rate of return of 8 percent, you will have a million dollars.” For more information on the recession go to www.bls.gov.

When the stock market crashed in 1929, it was the beginning of a chain of events that led to the Great Depression. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt created a “New Deal” that provided relief for those who were unemployed, provided recovery for the economy and reformed both the economic and banking systems. People could learn some lessons from this period concerning the economic situation the U.S. is facing now. President Obama signed a stimulus plan called The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. This stimulus plan includes bailouts for financial institutions, federal tax cuts, expansion of unemployment benefits and other social welfare provisions. Both situations pumped money into government-sponsored public works projects. The people who managed those projects worked in the public sector for which this college trains students in the public administration program. This is a field that is “the best kept secret in San Antonio because so many young people do not know the program exists,” Coordinator Sylvia De Leon said March 20. The program has been at this college since 1975. The reason a lot of students do not choose to major in this field is because of a lack of knowledge regarding the field, she said. Federal funds from the New Deal came to San Antonio and the city managed the money. Then organizations and companies bid for the projects and in turn created jobs. The money that came to San Antonio was used to make the Japanese Tea Gardens, Brackenridge Park and the Arneson River Theater. The individuals who manage the money coming into the city for various projects work in public administration.

The main misconception about the program is that students think that they will end up running for office, De Leon said. A student is more likely to end up working with the elected official, she said. “Students become city planners, human resource specialists, and there is a job available no matter who is elected,” she said. She also said that people in public administration must remain politically neutral because they never know what political party they will end up working with. The private sector has a cyclical business system, meaning the money earned depends on the business cycle and revenue on the goods and services. Some examples of private sectors are H-E-B, Valero, Wal-Mart and Frost Bank. Public sectors are city, county, state and federal agencies, which have a continuous flow of money coming in from taxes and fees. Advantages of a job in the public sector are health benefits, retirement systems and job security even when the economy is down, she said. Another good reason to work in a public agency is the federal student loan repayment program. This allows public agencies to repay up to $10,000 per year of student loans for college education, provided that employees sign a three-year agreement with an agency, The Public Administration Club open to any student regardless of major. The club “helps the community through various community service projects,” she said. Students learn leadership, fundraising and public speaking skills. The club Web site is http://www. accd.edu/sac/business/html/clubs/ sacpac/. For more information, contact De Leon at 486-0192 or sdeleon@mail. accd.edu.


The Ranger

Premiere

8 • www.theranger.org 8 • www.theranger.org Courtesy “A Place to Stand” premieres at 8 p.m. today in Watson Fine Arts Center at St. Philip’s College.

Musical lesson on racism By Melissa Toscano Lazcano “A Place to Stand,” a musical play about an African-American family confronting race issues in an American urban landscape, premieres today at 8 p.m. in Watson Fine Arts Center at St. Philip’s College. Theater Coordinator Vincent Hardy wrote and directed the play. “The way we approach this production is relevant to today’s youth because the play addresses the choices young people make in life,” Hardy said in a March 17 press release. The play includes a cast of at least 15 characters in a dance choreographed by dance Professor Georgina Morgan with musical score by music Director Jake

March 27, 2009 • 9 March 27, 2009 • 9 Photos by Tyler Cleveland

Owen. John Martin, interim Director of student life, and Jamaica Bates Neal, a former student attending St. Mary’s University, will lead a talk-back session with the audience following the play. Show times run weekends March 27 through April 5. Performances are at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2:30 p.m. Sunday. Admission for district students, faculty and staff with ID, seniors and San Antonio Theater Coalition members is $5. General admission is $10. Free admission for middle and high school students. For reservations or more information, call 486-2704.

Art presentation represents the best student research By Lea Thompson

File

Six art history and art appreciation students will be honored for their achievements at the Spring Student Symposium at 10:50 a.m. Thursday in the visual arts center. Students are chosen for the symposium by writing outstanding research papers in ARTS 1301, Art Appreciation; ARTS 1303, Art Survey 1; and ARTS 1304, Art Survey 2. Students use their research papers to create an oral and visual presentation for their faculty and peers. Thousands of student papers were written between spring 2008 and fall 2009, but only six papers were selected in January to be featured in the symposium. The art of tattooing will be covered in symposium. Fine arts Professors Marlene Hoover and Debra Schafter, who served as the judges, started the sities stand out from their peers and give them symposium nine years ago. .confidence needed in their careers, Hoover said. “We realized there wasn’t really an equivalent of “We try to make it as much of a professional the annual Student Art Exhibit,” Schafter said. “We presentation as possible. It is a good experience for wanted to celebrate the achievements of art history the students’ futures,” Hoover said. and art appreciation students, too.” Fine arts student Erika Mullins is currently purFaculty helped the students to develop presen- suing a bachelor’s degree and hopes to eventually tations and create visual aids with professional gain a master’s degree in art. Mullins will present quality. “The Art of Tattoo in Ancient Egypt.” This college is a two-year school, so this honor Fine arts student Jeremy Chavez is workcan help students transferring to four-year univer- ing toward an associate degree and hopes to

eventually earn a bachelor’s degree. Chavez will present his research on the “Catacombs of the Mediterranean.” Fine arts student Clare Little was an art teacher for 10 years before attending this college to study studio art. Little has already been featured in local exhibitions and will be the sole exhibitor at the Flight Gallery in April. Little will present her research on “Vedas vs. the Ancient Hindu Temple.” Fine arts student Dede Lane is a returning student working toward a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Design at Texas State UniversitySan Marcos. Lane will present her research “The Evolution and Impact of Trome L’oeil.” Digital design student Jonathan Trevino has already gained recognition for his artwork. During high school, Trevino won a Gold Seal Award at the Visual Arts Scholastic Event in the state finals. His presentation will be “Gestamtkunstwerk: The Spirit of Transcendence in Symbolist Art.” Fine arts student Sharon Milford is involved in learning about and experiencing with medium format photography at this college. Milford will present her research on “Sound in Art.” The symposium will be from 10:50 a.m.- noon in Room 120. A reception with coffee and pastries will follow the presentations. Call 785-6074 for more information.

Joshua Macias

Performing as hypochondriac Argan in the satire “The Imaginary Invalid,” theater and radio-television-film sophomore John Perez talks with theater sophomore Avery Moore as his stepdaughter Angelique while theater sophomore Lori Roman dusts the wall as maid Toinette during rehearsal.

Laughter expected for play Moliére’s “The Imaginary Invalid” set to premiere April 2 in McCreless Theater. By Dani Williams

KSYM Pledge Drive:

Guest DJs Robert Reyes of WOAI and Brother Dave from KZEP stopped in Thursday to show support for KSYM’s pledge drive, which has now collected more than $9,000 in pledges. The pledge drive continues through Sunday. Call 486-KSYM to pledge.

The theater and speech communication department is preparing for the play called “The Imaginary Invalid” which opens Thursday night in McCreless Theater. “The Imaginary Invalid” has a cast of nine and is directed by drama Instructor Ronald Watson. The play was one of the last works of playwright Moliére before he died in 1673. “We’re doing the play in its original time period, but the play is really timeless because these issues are very much still alive today,” Watson said. The story takes place in Paris in 1673. Theater sophomore John Perez plays an older, wealthy man who is a hypochondriac named Argan. His mischievous physician and pharmacist have hoodwinked Argan into believing he is ill, so Argan can continue to give out his riches. “If you like making fun of doctors and fart noises, this play is for you,” theater freshman John Belcher, who plays Mr. Fleurant, said. With the astounding thought of being ill and not knowing how he is going to pay his bills, he comes up

with an idea of having his daughter married to a doctor because he thinks he can always have a doctor around. Unfortunately, Argan’s daughter Angèlique, played by theater sophomore Avery Moore, has a couple of ideas of her own when she falls in love with Clèante, played by theater sophomore Daniel Lerma. This will be Lerma’s first performance here. Argan goes on to believe he has found a decent doctor who will take care of him and a fitting doctor to marry his daughter. “The doctor he picks out is a real boob; he’s a real dunce,” Watson said. Watson said the young man is about to graduate and become a doctor and he is the nephew of Argan’s physician. “Cléante is an airhead and a love maniac in my eyes. I love the cast I’m working with,” Lerma said. Toinette, played by theater sophomore Lori Roman, is the maid, friend, and according to Watson, the smartest in the play. She helps Angélique set out for what she really wishes for, happiness. “It’s every dream I’ve hoped for and more in a dream,” Moore said. In Moliére plays, Watson said, “The servants are always the smartest ones, and the rich people are always the one who are made to look like fools.” Watson said this play is an adapta-

tion of the original script. Playwright Constance Congdon, who teaches at Amherst College, adapted the script and modernized it, edited some characters and reduced the play from three acts to two acts. “There is an opera at the end of the first act where they’re all singing but telling their own thoughts,” Watson said. The actors have been rehearsing since the middle of February. The scenery of the play is inside a home with white walls, floor and furniture, but every character will have on a different color green referring to their greed, money, envy and sickness, Watson said. “It’s definitely a comedy. I think the audience can expect to identify with some of the characters,” Watson said. “As in every Moliére play, I think, there always is a warning against blind faith. Moliére seems to be telling us we shouldn’t have blind faith in anything, no matter what it is,” Watson said. The show is about an hour and a half to two hours long. All district students, faculty and staff get in free with school ID. General admission is $10. The play will begin at 8 p.m. Thursday and April 3-4 and 8-11. A matinee performance will be at Director Ronald Watson plays the keyboard while theater sophomore Jennifer 2:30 p.m. April 5. For more information, call 733- Godfrey as Beline, the wife of hypochondriac Argan, and theater sophomore Benjamin Myers as Mr. de Bonnefoi sing in the closing act during rehearsal. 2715.

Theater sophomore Avery Moore, performing as Angélique, the daughter of a hypochondriac in the satire, converses with theater sophomore Lori Roman as the maid Toinette during rehearsal.


10 • March 27, 2009

Upcoming

www.theranger.org • The Ranger

Pizza Hut owners offer to match March donations Battered Women and Children’s Shelter could collect an extra $100,000.

By Laura Garcia

SAC Program: “Black Holes” at 7:45 p.m. and 9 p.m. at Scobee Planetarium. Admission for adults 18-54 $5, seniors 55 or over $3, and children 4-17 $2. Free with ACCD ID. Call 486-0100. NVC Lecture: Question-and-answer session by Sharon Davis and Kevin Kreczko, SeaWorld production manager, about performing arts opportunities noon-1 p.m. in Room 105 of Pecan. Open to all performing arts students. Call 486-4809. Concert: San Antonio Sor Juana Festival Kick-Off Celebration: Lila Downs 7 p.m.-10 p.m. in Sunken Garden Theater, 3875 N. St. Mary’s. Pre-show at 5 p.m. Call 207-3050. SAC Event: Pizza with the president noon-1 p.m. in the Fiesta Room of Loftin. Contact vsalinas16@ mail.accd.edu.

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Hirschfeld at noon in the Coates University Center at Trinity University. Call 999-8404. SAC Event: Spa Day from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. in the Fiesta Room of Loftin. Call 486-0128. SAC Transfer: Schreiner from 12:30 p.m.-3 p.m. in second floor lobby of McCreless. Call 486-0868.

SAC Meeting: Psych Club at 2 p.m. in Room 607 of Moody. Continues Wednesdays. Call 733-2604. SAC Meeting: Gay and Lesbian Association at 2:30 p.m. in Rooms 612-613 of Moody. Continues Wednesdays. Call 486-0902. SAC Meeting: American Institute of Architecture Students at 4 p.m. in Room 251 of Chance. Continues Wednesdays. Call 486-0079.

March 28 SAC Performance: “A Night of Arias” by the NATS Singers at 7:30 p.m. in the Auditorium of McAllister. Call 733-2731.

SAC Meeting: Astronomy Club noon-1 p.m. in Room 101 of the nursing education building. Call 486-0045.

SAC Event: Women4Women Relationship retreat hosted by Peer Educators, women’s center, and the center for health training 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. in Room 120 of visual arts. Call 486-1448.

SAC Lecture: “Sex-Moral Teaching of the Church” by Deacon Manny C. Cardoza and free lunch from 12:30 p.m.-1 p.m. at Catholic Student Center, 312 W. Courtland. Call 736-3752.

SAC Transfer: University of the Incarnate Word 9 a.m.-1 p.m. in the second floor lobby of McCreless. Call 486-0868. SAC Event: Chicken fajita taco fundraiser, sponsored by Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science 8 a.m.- 2 p.m. in the mall. Call 725-3063. Event: Child-care services for ages 2-4 from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. at Castle Hills Christian Church. Continues Tuesdays and Thursdays. Call 440-7471.

Event: 15th anniversary Quinceañera reception for ACCION Texas 6 p.m.-8 p.m. at Pearl Brewery. $50. Call 852-0108, ext. 33. SAC Event: Health Fest sponsored by kinesiology and dance department from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. in Candler. Call 486-1023.

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SAC Transfer: St. Mary’s University 8:30 a.m.-11 a.m. in the second floor lobby of McCreless and appointments from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. in the transfer center. Call 486-0868.

kroe SAC Event: Coffee Night and open mic 6 p.m.-9 s p.m. in the Round in Loftin. Call 4860668.

Exhibit: Queens and Crowns: Fiesta’s Royal Traditions at the Witte Museum, 3801 Broadway. Adults $7, seniors $6 and children $5. Continues though Sept. 7. Call 357-1900. Performance: “I Give You Jesus 2009” at 7 p.m. Doors open 6 p.m. at the Family Life Center of Livingway Christian Church, 13285 Interstate 35 N. Tickets $7 general admission; to order online visit: www. LivingwayChurch.net. Continues April 4, 10, 11. Call 637-5000. .

Concert: Walden Chamber Players at 7:30 p.m. in Ruth Taylor Recital Hall of Trinity University. Call 9998212. April 6 SAC Event: Karaoke Mondays 11 a.m.-1 p.m. in the Fiesta Room of Loftin. Continues April 20. Call 7332641. SAC Transfer: University of Texas at San Antonio 9 a.m.-11 a.m. in McCreless and appointments from 11:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. in the transfer center. Call 7486-0868. April 7

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March 31

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April 4 SAC Transfer: St. Mary’s University 8:30 a.m.-11 a.m. in the second floor lobby of McCreless and appointments from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. in the transfer center. Call 486-0868.

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The Island (2005) Ewn McGregor, Scarlett Johansson, Djimon Housou McGregor lives in a contained world. He and the rest of the population await their turn to go to the island, the only habitable place in the world. His goes on the run when he finds out that he is a clone meant for organ harvesting and to go to the island means death.

Concert: Lila Downs, sponsored by Esperanza Peace and Justice Center at 8 p.m. at Sunken Garden Theater, 3875 N. St. Mary’s. Doors open at 5 p.m. Call 228-0201.

Speaker: “Exploring the Underwater World of the Ancient Mediterranean” by Nicolle

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Face/Off (1997) John Travolta, Nicolas Cage, Alessandro Nivola After finally catching the criminal he thinks killed his son, Cage realizes that there is a bomb hidden in L.A. that will kill everyone. The only person who knows where to find the the bomb is Travolta’s brother, Nivola. Cage undergoes a surgery that will allow him to assume Travolta’s face. But when Travolta wakes up with Cage’s face, he begins to wreak havoc on Cage’s life.

PAC Event: Horticulture Club plant sale 9 a.m.-5 p.m. in the greenhouse on the southeast side of Palo Alto Campus. Call 486-3073. April 3

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Multiplicity (1996) - Micheal Keaton, Andie MacDowell, Zack Duhame Keaton is overwhelmed by everything in his life. Balancing his work and family is too much for him. He thinks that his problems are solved when a geneticist comes to him and offers to clone him. But the clones begin taking over his work and his wife.

April 2 SAC Lecture: “Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act: Comparable Pay for Comparable Work” by Christy WoodwardKaupert at 12:15 p.m. in United Methodist Student Center, 102 Belknap. Call 733-1441. April 1

Scholarship: Sponsored by the ¡Adelante! U.S. Education Leadership Fund. Deadline May 1. Visit www. adelantefund.org.

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Big Business (1988) Bette Midler, Lily Tomlin, Fred Ward One night, two sets of twins are born, one to a rich family and one to a poor family. Due to a hospital mix-up, the poor family and the rich family end up with one of the other’s daughters. Years later, the sisters meet up over a dispute about the local factory.

NVC Contest: Environmental photography contest. Deadline for submission April 1. Entries should be sent to Chris Harrison in Room 306F of Live Oak. Call 348-2246.

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Stepford Wives (1975) Katharin Ross, Paula Prentiss, Peter Masterson When Ross and her family move to the small suburb of Stepford, Ross is immediately repulsed by the perfect housewives who seem to only serve their husbands. When Ross watches two of her friends succomb into the role of housewife, Ross investigates and realizes that the Stepford Wives are robots.

is to “love each other — that means caring for our neighbors: where those in mourning are comforted; where the hungry are fed; where the poor hear good news.” The foundation’s mission is to help those who actively care for such neighbors. It will match all public donations made payable to Family Violence Prevention Services and sent to the Pizza Hut corporate offices at 1009 Austin Highway, San Antonio TX 78209. For more information visit www.fvps.org.

March 27

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In recognition of the individual colleges having thier uniqueness slowly drained, The Ranger presents a movie list full of multiples.

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Multiples

Pizza Hut challenges the community to donate to the Battered Women and Children’s Shelter during the month of March and promises to match it up to $100,000. The Richmond Family Foundation selected

the shelter as the 2009 recipient of a challenge grant. The shelter has been active for 42 years in breaking the cycle of family violence and aids in emergency shelter, transitional housing and counseling for the abused. Ten years ago, Jack and Laura Richmond decided to repay the community through a challenge grant on the anniversary of opening their Pizza Hut franchise 41 years ago. The philosophy of the Richmond Foundation

SAC Transfer: Schreiner University from 12:30 p.m.-3 p.m. in the second floor lobby of McCreless. Call 486-0868.

SAC Event: Spring Job Fair sponsored by career services 9 a.m.-2 p.m. in Fiesta Room of Loftin. Contact jbarron38@mail.accd.edu or call 486-0135. SAC Lecture: Leigh Jones, a reporter with the Galveston County Daily News, on Hurricane Ike coverage using social networking media during the Edith Fox King Journalism Lecture 9:25 a.m.-10:40 a.m. in Room 120 of Visual Arts. Call 486-1765.

Calendar Legend SAC: San Antonio College NVC: Northwest Vista College SPC: St. Philip’s College PAC: Palo Alto College NLC: Northeast Lakeview College SWC: South West Campus For coverage in Upcoming, call 486-1773 or e-mail to sac-ranger@mail.accd.edu two weeks in advance.


The Ranger • www.theranger.org

Campus creates transfer program with Michigan university Engineering program requires three-month job co-ops. By José Castillo and Trey Randolph The engineering program at this college signed March 16 an articulation agreement with Kettering University in Flint, Mich., expanding options for students majoring in engineering, mathematics and science. The agreement allows students majoring in these subjects to enroll at this college for the first two years and then transfer to Kettering for 2½ years. Students opting to transfer to Kettering, a private university that specializes in business, math, engineering and science, can expect guaranteed admission into the program if they meet the university’s admission requirements. The unique academic plan will have students attending classes at Kettering for three months at a time. Between the three-month cycles, students will return to San Antonio for paid, three-month co-op terms with local businesses, establishing important connections and providing valuable business experience. Dr. Stanley R. Liberty, president of Kettering, said the “learning environment in an academic

Melissa Toscano Lazcano workplace goes hand in hand with classroom” education. Federico Zaragoza, vice chancellor of economic and workforce development for the Alamo Community College District, recognized the role played by education in improving the economy. “We at the (district) recognize the important role of academic development” to encourage economic growth, Zaragoza said, adding “at the heart” of knowledge and innovation “is engineering.” Liberty added that this college was chosen for the co-op in part because Texas ranks third in states from which Kettering receives applications, with San Antonio leading the cities in Texas. Kettering University was founded in 1919 and is a co-op school that sends the entire student body into professional co-op jobs. Academic programs at Kettering include industrial engineering, business administration, engineering physics, applied physics, applied math, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, chemistry and biochemistry. Professor Dan Dimitriu, engineering coordinator at this college, is excited about the growth of the engineering program. “This agreement is beautiful,” Dimitriu said. “It’s really good, really good.” Dimitriu said the program

March 27, 2009 • 11

Engineering master’s degree now offered at UTSA By José Castillo

Federico Zaragoza, district vice chancellor for economic and workforce development; Stanley Liberty, president of Kettering University in Michigan; and President Robert Zeigler sign the agreement for engineering students. has been approached by New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, another university that specializes in science and engineering, about entering into a fully articulated two-plus-two agreement with this college. He met with the director of administration this week and exchanged information and catalogues from both schools. Dimitriu hopes to have an agreement signed with New Mexico Tech by the end of the semester. “People are coming to us

now,” Dimitriu said. “We are really growing fast.” Dimitriu’s accomplishments for the department, according to a press release available at the signing ceremony, include increasing the number of students enrolled in the department from 230 students in all 1999 to 489 students in fall 2007; starting summer bridge programs for high school students interested in engineering; and partnering with industry and other colleges to enable students to continue their engineering education and experience.

Engineering students have a new local option. The University of Texas at San Antonio announced a new master’s program in advanced manufacturing and enterprise engineering. The program brings the number of master’s programs the university offers to 47. “It’s a rare degree,” Christy Fish, public affairs specialist at UTSA, said. “This kind of degree produces engineering efficiency experts.” Fish said that because UTSA is the only school offering the degree in the greater San Antonio area, the new program will help the university to keep more of the students currently enrolled there. The program will focus on improving critical thinking and decision-making skills while optimizing manufacturing techniques. The program is also designed to stress efficiency, productivity and reducing costs related to manufacturing processes. Dr. John Saygin, professor of mechanical engineer-

ing at UTSA, said the new program is different from other programs because it considers the business aspect of the field. “The program has a business flavor to it,” Saygin said. “There is really a need for students with that skill set.” The growth in San Antonio’s manufacturing sector, one of the largest sectors of the city’s economy, was a driving force behind the creation of the program. With companies like Toyota, Lockheed-Martin and Caterpillar calling this city home, the need for individuals trained in advanced manufacturing and enterprise systems is at an alltime high, Saygin said. The program is officially on UTSA’s graduate school Web site, but the school is not offering all of the graduate courses yet. Initially, students can register for limited classes in the summer, but Saygin said the full program will likely be offered in the fall. For more information, visit http://engineering.utsa. edu/~mechanical/amee.


www.theranger.org • The Ranger

12• March 27, 2009

Melissa Toscano Lazcano

Amber Delaney, member of the San Antonio Coalition for Life, speaks from experience during the “Give Life a Chance” presentation on post-abortive issues Monday at the Catholic Student Center.

Post-abortion counseling urged By Priscilla Reyna-Ovalle Abortion hurts women, mentally, physically and emotionally, a representative of San Antonio Coalition for Life said Monday at the Catholic Student Center. Amber Delaney, 37, a registered nurse, and a member of the board of directors of the San Antonio Coalition for Life, said that after having an abortion, at 19, she could no longer have children. After a woman has had an abortion, she may experience anxiety, depression or become suicidal or infertile right after the procedure or years later, Delaney said. Delaney also said that, in retrospect, it wasn’t until years after she had an abortion that she realized she was behaving destructively. She had become promiscuous and was in a relationship with a man twice her age. Delaney went over the reasons women might want to have an abortion. “Some women are coerced into it or think they’ll be helping someone by having an abortion — a boyfriend who is going to school or parents who are freaking out — or because they have been raped. Some women also use abortion as a form of contraception,” Delaney said. She is promoting support for 40 Days for Life, a national campaign going on in more than 200 cities. Participants target clinics that do abortions.

The local coalition has been congregating at the Planned Parenthood clinic at 104 Babcock Road from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. since Feb. 25 and will continue until April 5. The coalition focuses on praying, fasting, reaching out to the community and holding a vigil outside the clinic. “Things have been getting pretty aggressive. They have a cop on duty now. We had encounters with protesters last Saturday. They’ve been getting angry because we’ve been hitting their pocketbooks,” Delaney said. The coalition has 50 trained “sidewalk” counselors who try to convince women and men walking into the clinic to not go through with having an abortion. She also said there has been good dialogue outside the clinic with people in the community who had no idea the clinic performed abortions. Others have said women having abortions is none of their business. Delaney converted from being raised Southern Baptist to Catholicism in 2000. U.S. bishops put together a healing ministry called the Rachel Project, which provides counseling for post-abortive women. It is conducted in a private setting. For information on the Rachel Project, call 342-HOPE or visit rachel@anewchoice.org. For information on the San Antonio Coalition for Life go to www.40daysforlife.com/sanantonio.


The Ranger • www.theranger.org

March 27, 2009 • 13

Day trip shows off Texas State to STEM majors By Michelle Franco On Feb. 21 at 8 a.m. about 20 students met at the college to board a coach bus and attend the Texas State University-San Marcos Bobcat Day. Students met with faculty and staff at the university, received information on financial aid and scholarships and toured the campus, including the new Ingram School of Engineering and visited the University Bookstore. The trip was funded by the Puentes program, a partnership between this college and Texas State, whose primary objective is to increase the number of science, technology, engineering and math, also referred to as STEM, majors. The program is part of a Title 5 grant for about $2.5 million that this college received in October. Puentes means “bridges.” “The trip was awesome,” Ana Guerrero, accounting sophomore at this college, said Tuesday. “It was really helpful and it makes you feel like you want be there already,”

she said, “You get to feel the atmosphere you’ll be around. It shows that they are a great school and can offer a lot.” Frank Perez, Texas State pipeline coordinator at this college, said, “It is so important for students to succeed and transfer on to a university. They should utilize the resources around them like our office, tutoring, counseling and other services that the school provides.” Perez is the point of contact for the Texas State Bobcat Day trip. Media services Chair Barbara Knotts is the director of the Puentes Grant. “This is an area where there is a low turnout of students,” she said Wednesday in a phone interview. In fall 2007, a total of 2,196 students were declared STEM majors, less than 10 percent of this college’s enrollment. The reason for low transfer and graduation rates can be found in the economic, educational and language barriers that students face, according to information the college used in the grant application.

“The grant particularly targets Hispanic and low-income students, yet all students will benefit from it.” Many SAC students do not have the academic preparation or the social or financial support systems sufficient to complete college, according to the grant application. According to the Texas Education Agency, 62.3 percent of the students in the Education Region this college serves, are economically disadvantaged. The Puentes program is also funding professional development for STEM teachers, as well as various renovation projects. The MathSpace Center, currently occupying six classrooms in McCreless Hall, will be rewired and furnished to create a versatile and inviting space for student learning. After the renovations, it will provide two tutoring spaces, with one-on-one tutoring stations separated by movable walls, two computer-based instruction and study spaces, two group study rooms and a staff office.

The next day trip to Texas State University will be April 18. For more information, go to Room 614 of Moody or call 486-0764.

Additionally, two math classrooms will be modernized to include Smart classroom equipment. A Smart classroom is a classroom that has an instructor station equipped with computer and audiovisual equipment, allowing the instructor to teach using a wide variety of media, including DVD, VHS playback, PowerPoint presentations and more, all displayed through a data projector. Other renovations include the expansion of the Math, Engineering and Science Achievement Center, the expansion and installment of Smart classrooms in the BioSpot, located in the biol-

ogy department, and a GreenSpot/greenhouse where students enrolled in general biology courses as well as Biology Club students will grow plans for sale in the community and educate the community on eco-friendly gardening. The greenhouse will be located between the nursing and allied health complex and Chance Academic Center. Most renovations are expected to be completed in 2010. A Title 5 program is a federal grant issued to institutions of higher education to enhance and expand their capacity to serve Hispanic and low-income students by providing funds to improve and strengthen the academic quality, institutional stability, management, and fiscal capabilities. The institutions have to be Hispanic Serving Institutions, which requires the institution to have 25 percent Hispanic students. Forty-eight percent of students at this college attending in the fall of 2007 were Hispanic; however, Texas State is only 22 percent Hispanic.

Women’s History documentary details dildo debate in Texas By Priscilla Reyna-Ovalle Laws to regulate public and private conduct are the focus of “The Dildo Diaries,” a documentary with a tonguein-cheek look at the Texas Legislature. The 2002 documentary was introduced to an audience of about 10 by Librarian Celita De Armond March 6 in the visual arts center. The film, produced and directed by Laura Barton and Judy Wilder was shown as part of Women’s History Week. The late syndicated columnist Molly Ivins, who coined calling the Texas Legislature “The Lege,” is featured in the film. “The Texas Legislature embarrasses everyone with writing laws about sex. Ever since I can remember, and I’ve been

covering them for more than 30 years, it just seems to me that they should give up the entire endeavor. It’s just an embarrassment to everybody when they do … stuff like this,” Ivins said in the film. The documentary showcases the 1993 debate between Rep. Warren Chisum, R-Pampa, and Rep. Debra Danburg, D-Houston, about an amendment to the Texas Penal Code outlawing sodomy regardless of sexual orientation. Danburg called it “the most watched debate in Texas.” In the debate, Danburg said to Chisum, “Mr. Chisum you’re trying to make it criminal even between the opposite sex, even if they are married.” Chisum replied, “Especially if they are married. I can’t believe anyone

would do that if they were married.” Danbury pressed on: “If me and my husband were having intercourse and he slipped and his penis touched my anus, should I go and turn myself in to some health official?” Chisum answered, “I would say to go see a doctor about his aim.” “Who is going to be in the bedroom enforcing all these laws?” asked Rep. Senfronia Thompson, D-Texas, when interviewed in her office. Scott Tucker, owner of Topco Sales, a company that sells sex toys, and president of the Free Speech Coalition, warned of government intrusion on individuality. “Whoever has the most money has the most lobbyists and makes the most noise are changing the laws, and that

makes Texas the most primitive and repressive state,” Tucker said. The Texas Penal Code Chapter 43.23 (c) reads, a person who possesses six or more obscene devices presumes to possess them with intent to promote them. It became a felony to own more than six dildos. The film also features sex shop employees Andy Brent and Lynn Raridon from Austin’s Forbidden Fruit, who said that after the law went into effect that they had to describe dildos as “educational devices” to their customers. Barton and Wilder also visit a workshop manufacturing dildos. Porn star Anton Michael described as “very surreal” the experience of having his penis molded to make dildos.

“It feels like I dropped my ice cream on myself, naked,” Michael said. Jeffery Daniel, a criminal defense attorney, warned that government is becoming illegal. Bill Lyons, director of Free Speech Coalition, said people need to be aware of the laws and write to their elected representative. De Armand said that she thinks the whole initiative of the dildo law was aimed at women because women are the largest consumers. “It’s a gender thing,” she said. On Feb. 14, 2008, a federal appeals court overturned the Texas statute outlawing sex toy sale. This leaves Alabama the only state with such a ban. People can download more information about this film at dildodiaries.net.


Opinion

14 • March 27, 2009

www.theranger.org • The Ranger Edgar Puente

Editorials

Weigh your performance with drop date near it doesn’t factor into your GPA. But watch out. Texas law says that you can only drop six classes in your whole undergraduate career if you began college in or later than fall 2007. So if this your first semester or first year and you think you’re going to have to drop three classes, that might not be a wise idea. But if it’s your last semester and the class is an elective that you don’t really need that you took on a lark, then it might be OK. So take some time, examine where you are in your classes and realize that you’re going to have to make a decision soon. Talk to your teachers about what you’re doing wrong and see what they think. Look at their policies and engage in some self-reflection and ask yourself, “Can I pass this course?”

Campus sports teams need a little support Our sports teams need more support from students. This college’s Ranger men’s basketball team won the South Texas Club Sports League championship March 7 against the Southwest Texas Junior College Cowboys. The problem is barely anybody was in attendance to witness the victory. Low attendance has been a problem for all sports at this college, but the problem is not just limited to our college. The same day our Rangers won their championship, UTSA lost the Southland Conference title game to Stephen F. Austin in front of 2,036 fans. A UTSA victory would have won them a spot in the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2004, and only the fourth time since 1988. With such a chance in front of them, the Roadrunners probably expected a little more fan support. It would seem our low attendance problem is citywide, but the immense popularity of the Spurs throws a wrench in the thought that this town just doesn’t care about basketball. Obviously there are basketball fans

in town, they just need to realize that there is still quality basketball being played at every level, and the teams at every level need support. Maybe the problem is a lack of identifying with our team. If the players got more involved in campus activities, it would remind people that if they support us, we should support them. The difference, of course, is major-level college programs are designed to draw the best players to build the best team possible. While many of our players may not get to Division 1 or beyond, they still share at least one common trait with North Carolina’s Tyler Hansbrough and Oklahoma’s Blake Griffin of Division 1 — they love the game and love representing their team in competition. These are people very much like you: People who are going to class and earning their grades while participating in a sport, not earning their grades because of that participation. They dedicate themselves for love of the game, not the proposition of future riches. So support your teams.

Showcase more SAC bands Everyone who has stepped foot in Loftin on any given Friday has seen, or at least heard, the live music that Student Life organizes in the Fiesta Room. Regardless of the genre of music, many students stop to listen or just hover around the outskirts to take in a few notes. Student life needs to schedule more artists with ties to the college, to display our diversity and creativity as a student body. Isn’t that the point of student life: to further students’ pride and enjoyment of their college by providing a way to make everyone feel connected? What better way than showcasing the talents of the funny guy who sits behind you in math class, or the quiet girl in the front row of English? It could also help talented stu-

dents earn a few extra dollars for their skills. After all, the goal of college is to prepare us for success, so it only makes sense to provide opportunity to the student body whenever possible. There are no rules requiring members of bands playing the Fiesta Room to attend this college. The only rules are that artists must submit their music, via CD, MySpace or other convenient method, for approval by Jorge Posadas, director of student life. Some get paid if scheduled early enough. You have to be a student to participate in a number of on-campus activities, whether plays, sports or student government; enrollment should also be a requirement to play the role of featured musical entertainer as well.

RANGER THE

April 13 is an important day. It is the last day to withdraw from a course. After that, you are stuck with the course and the grade you deserve for the work you’ve done. Take a look at your teacher’s requirements. If there are four tests, but only the top three count and your grade on the final can replace one, you could still ace the class even if you’ve failed two tests. So you might decide to study like crazy for a couple of weeks and pass the class. That being said, if you’ve failed three tests and you know that there’s only going to be the final and each test counts for 25 percent of your grade, your chances aren’t looking good for an A, a B, or even a C. No matter what you get on the final, you’re going to fail the class. A “drop” on your record is a whole lot better than an F. For one,

Staff

Editor Trey Randolph Opinion Editor Brianna Roberts Photographers Tyler Cleveland Melissa Toscano Lazcano Photo Team Leda Garcia, D.A. James, Joshua Macias Illustrators Juan Carlos Campos, Fred Nockroes, Edgar Puente Production Manager James Bosquez Production Assistants Laura Garcia Regis L. Roberts Staff Writers José Castillo, Henry A. Chavarria, Michelle Franco, Giselle Guadron, Krystina Hodge, Theodore Knapinsky, Rennie Murrell, Priscilla Reyna-Ovalle, Jeff Reese, Vanessa M. Sanchez, Lea Thompson, Dani Williams Web Administrator Charles Cima Circulation Eddie San Miguel The Ranger, the student newspaper at San Antonio College, is a laboratory project of the journalism classes in the Department of Journalism-Photography, published Fridays except during summer, holidays and examinations. News contributions accepted by telephone (486-1773), by fax (733-2868), by e-mail (sac-ranger@mail.accd.edu) or at the editorial office (Room 212 Loftin Student Center). Advertising rates available upon request (486-1765). The Ranger is available online at http:// www.theranger.org. The Ranger is a member of the Texas In-

tercollegiate Press Association, the Associated Collegiate Press, the Texas Community College Journalism Association and the Associated Press. ©2009 by The Ranger staff, San Antonio College, 1300 San Pedro Ave., San Antonio, TX 78212-4299. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without permission. Guest Viewpoints: Faculty, staff, students and community members are welcome to contribute guest viewpoints of up to 450 words. Writers should focus on campus or current events in a critical, persuasive or interpretative style. All viewpoints must be published with a photo portrait of the writer. Letters Policy: The Ranger invites readers to share views by writing letters to the editor. Space limitations force the paper to limit letters to two double-spaced, typewritten pages. Letters will be edited for spelling, style, grammar, libel and length. Editors reserve the right to deny publication of any letter. Letters should be mailed to The Ranger, Department of Journalism-Photography, San Antonio College, 1300 San Pedro Ave., San Antonio TX 78212-4299. Letters also may be brought to the newspaper office in Room 212 of Loftin Student Center, e-mailed to sac-ranger@mail.accd. edu or faxed to 733-2868. Letters must be signed and must include the writer’s printed name, classification, major, Social Security number and telephone number. For more information, call 486-1773. Single Copy Policy: Because of high production costs, members of the Alamo Community College District community are permitted one free copy per issue. Where available, additional copies may be purchased with prior approval for 50 cents each by contacting The Ranger business office. Newspaper theft is a crime. Those who violate the single copy rule may be subject to civil and criminal prosecution and subject to college discipline.


The Ranger • www.theranger.org

Op-Ed

March 27, 2009 • 15

SXSW: A low with every high

Joshua Macias

I’m standing in a line of punk rock kids with bad posture and worse hair, thumping along to a drumbeat muted by the wall I’m leaning against. The beat comes from a band I desperately want to see but to which I am torturously being Viewpoint by forced to only listen. The James Bosquez burly doorman is nonchalant as he intermittently allows a couple more people to trickle into the club. I haven’t been in line long, and I’m getting closer to the front by the minute, but with all the empty space I see through the doorway, I wonder why is this process so damn slow. This isn’t Studio 54, after all. It’s another of the many dives in Austin that all seem to take themselves a little too seriously once a year when the South by Southwest music festival rolls into town. I overhear the door guy: “Fire codes. Gotta be careful ’bout how many people get in.” I understand this, and knowing the band I really want to see isn’t playing for another 45 minutes, I wait patiently until I’m the next up. Burly Door Guy gives me a once over. “Nice shirt,” he says, and suddenly I’m in with the cool kids, bumping elbows with the chosen few … paying way too much for cruddy beer. No matter. I’m here at SXSW, my favorite band is on stage, and the hassle of long lines and snotty doormen are the furthest thing from my mind. It’s barely 4 p.m. when the show ends, an example of one of the wonderful phenomena SXSW produces: the free day show. I’ve seen two wonderful bands now and have shelled out nothing for it, though the gouging at the beer line makes me reconsider that notion. Regardless, the day is young, and I still have a few must-see shows to attend. There’s about an hour and a half layover between this show and the next, so my party and I spend that time wandering the streets and taking in the eclectic spectrum of musicians on

every corner. Within one block there is a Japanese band dressed in costumes reminiscent of Power Rangers and a rapper spewing rhymes to an audience more concerned that the free beer has just been tapped out. Not exactly what I came to Austin to see, but free music is free music and free beer is free beer. I decide it’s time to stand in line for the next show and set off on my destination armed only with an address and directions to the wrong part of town. I’m a little uneasy as I park in a neighborhood and step out scanning my surroundings for any indication of a bar, club or a person who doesn’t make me look at my feet. I follow the address I’ve been given a few blocks up only to find a beaten up sorority house with about a hundred 20-somethings milling about drinking yet more sponsored free beer. “Uhm … is Superdrag playing here?” I ask the nearest person, who has the same “what the heck is going on here” look on his face. “Well … that’s them … so yeah, I guess so,” he responds, pointing to the members of one of my favorite rock bands standing in the yard. By some SXSW magic, the next two hours are spent hanging out with the band before watching them play a backyard show for fewer people than were standing in line at the first show I attended. The sun has set, I’ve just experienced a once in a lifetime show, and my pleasure receptors are on cruise control as I make plans for the next destination. Someone once said, “You can get too much of a good thing,” but that guy hadn’t just hung out with rock stars, and I make a bee-line to downtown Austin for what will surely be an unforgettable evening. However, there’s something different about the Austin I knew earlier that day. Suddenly there is nowhere to park. People walk freely through traffic as if crosswalks don’t exist. The lines to get into shows are expectably long, but now they no longer move. Burly Door Guy is everywhere but no longer thinks my shirt is cool enough to let me in.

Letters

Tuition hike fair

Editor: Re: “Students want more information” in March 20 edition: As a student at San Antonio College, I can understand the frustration that students are feeling toward a tuition hike. However, the student body needs to realize that the Bexar County property owners already pay property taxes to help keep the cost of tuition down. This is probably why the board was hesitant to ask for an increase in property taxes. Students who attend San Antonio College are already getting a good start on an education for a good price. This 5 percent increase has been reported as totaling out to a $7 per credit hour increase. Assuming you take 12 credit hours, that is an increase of $84 per semester. Admittedly, I’ve never had much help from financial aid, mostly because my family makes just a little too much. All this means is that I have had to pay for my tuition and my books with my own money. I can honestly say that another $84 a semester would not keep me from attending school. Marc Branham Computer Science Sophomore

KYSM isn’t student run Lead singer Ami Shalev of the Monotonics and his drum are lifted by the crowd as he performs at Waterloo Park during South by Southwest. What do you mean shows cost money? Where have all the free shows and easily accessible rock stars gone? Why are people with no idea who is playing standing in line? What is happening to my wonderful vision of SXSW? It’s midnight when the realization hits me — I’m not getting into any more shows. I trudge dejectedly back to my overpriced parking spot with the events of the day replaying in my mind. I make the lonely drive back down I-35 to San Antonio with a bitter taste in my mouth, but a smile slowly spreads over my face. The two sides of SXSW turned a perfect day into simply a great day, and that was more than worth the free cover charge.

Plan to attend the Edith Fox King Journalism Lecture 9:25 a.m.-10:40 a.m. Tuesday, April 7 Room 120 of visual arts Reporter Leigh Jones of the Galveston County Daily News discusses the paper’s uninterrupted coverage of Hurricane Ike using new social media Faculty, staff and students welcome Call 486-1765 for information

Editor: At first I was disappointed that The Ranger was supporting the KSYM “begfest.” But after much thought, I was glad you used the picture of T-Bone (disc jockey Tom “T-Bone” Scheppke) on the cover because you made the point I have been trying to make for many months. T-Bone was quoted as saying he got his start in college radio. It must have been somewhere else because the only reason KSYM is a college radio station is that it sits on a college campus. What better way to show that KSYM is not a studentrun, college radio station, but a haven for nonstudent DJs who control the station than to put a DJ on the cover from a commercial station that is destined to fold in the near future. Other than the new AP students, about 95 percent of DJs are nonstudents. I am still an RTF sophomore because I am still being denied access to facilities to further my associate degree program. Jim Boyle Radio-television-film Sophomore


March 27, 2009 • 16

The Ranger • www.theranger.org

The

Fast

‘Foolish’

and the

By Vanessa M. Sanchez • Photos by Leda Garcia

D

Chuck Hammonds goes to Green Mountain Road to perform stunts every Thursday night. Hammonds is a member of the ‘Damn Fools’ organization for street bike riders.

Police officers warn bike riders to leave Feb. 26 at Chacho’s & Chalucci’s, located on Perrin Beitel.

U.S. Marine Sgt. Jordan Treviño, 24, is one of the riders that goes to Green Mountain Road to perform stunts on Thursday nights.

Adrian Pena, 22, creates a perfect circle with his bike during a burn out Feb. 26.

aniel “Dan” Diaz, computer networking sophomore at St. Philip’s College, stands by his ’07 Honda CBR 1000 outside of Chacho’s & Chalucci’s Thursday night, alongside the swarm of other motorcyclists and a few police officers to keep everything under control. Joining Diaz is Geffrey Martinez, business administration freshman at Northeast Lakeview, who goes by “Geff,” also on his ’07 Honda, a CBR 600. The men arrived in attire of thick jackets, gloves and custom helmets as they grouped with other “riders” as Diaz, and the majority of the other motorcyclists, refer to themselves. Diaz said he use to meet with different people each time until he found his niche, but now continues his return to Chacho’s & Chalucci’s because, as Diaz said, everyone at that spot is available for help with questions he may have. Diaz and Martinez are merely a couple among the many riders present each week. On March 5, an officer reported that hundreds of bikes show up each Thursday and weeks before, over 400 bikes populated the restaurant on Perrin Beitel. The cyclists arrive each Thursday at the restaurant about 8 p.m. until they are, for the most part, forced to leave, or by choice, off to Green Mountain Road where a smaller group visits and practices stunts outside of the Green Mountain Construction Co. Ltd. When arriving at Green Mountain about 11 p.m., the riders wait for more to reach the destination before they begin the night’s festivities and join in the stunt biker’s culture. There were many bikes in the parking lot. Diaz then proved the friendliness of riders by assisting Martinez in getting out of a tight spot in between bikes adjacent to a Dodge Ram. Diaz said some drivers on the road do not trust cyclists so it is safest to ride in a pack, which they do on the way to Green Mountain. Even though they have been run out by police offiComputer networking sophomore cers, the riders continue to Daniel Diaz visit the site each week. The San Antonio Police Department said trespassers can be arrested. Once a good number of riders have arrived at the location, about 20 bikers, and the rest of the onlookers, get ready to become part of biker’s nightlife. They begin doing wheelies, which is the act of giving the bike gas and shifting the weight of the driver to the back and forces the front end to lift. For the most part, they do wheelies, and all the other stunts, down the strip in front of the site in pairs. Differing from wheelies, some bikers like to do doughnuts, burning rubber while the smoke permeates the sky, one biker even made a smiley face out of them. Seeing that, Martinez questioned and Diaz explained to him how the design and doughnuts are done in general. Martinez said he is more of a recreational driver, because there is a large risk and it can become costly. He admitted he is interested in learning some tricks. The night slowly progresses into a competition where the riders compete to show who has the best stunts. There were many who rode fast, burned out, did more wheelies and concentrated on doing tricks. Diaz showed off his wheelie and told why he likes riding. He said the fastest he has driven was about 183 mph. He said he knows how to ride on the hood but needs more practice. Martinez and Diaz both are new to riding but are catching on quickly. Martinez has been riding for almost a year while Diaz has been riding for a year and a half. Diaz said he derives his inspiration from his father, who started riding at the age of 6 on a low-powered 50 CC mini bike. Diaz said he remembers the day he brought his bike; he and his father spontaneously dropped by a dealership to check out the bikes, when his father motioned him to get on, he did. “What I like about the riders is that we’re like family,” Diaz said. “If someone goes down, they’ll be there to help.” Unlike cars and trucks, Diaz said he has never heard or seen of bikers stranded on the side of the road. Diaz said being part of the biker community does not require one to attempt stunts like he does, the only prerequisite is owning a bike.

The Ranger March 27, 2009  

The Ranger print edition March 27, 2009

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