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Page A2 - The University Star

Thursday, June 1, 2006

TABLE OF CONTENTS Section A - News Sen. John Cornyn commencement speech…Page A3 Students ‘pack’ up unwanted goods, ‘pass’ them on…Page A4 Community celebrates reopening of Rio Vista Dam…Page A5 Fulbright scholars: Ruth Taylor and Susan Weill…Page A7 Retired SMPD officer remembered for trying to make a difference…Page A8 Student susceptibility to meningitis, mumps…Page A9 Guide to LBJ Student Center Pages…Pages A10,11 Civilian Soldiers…Page A12 ACC petition update…Page A13 McCoy College of Business Administration grant…Page A13 Annual bicycle roundup…Page A14 Local and campus government synopsis…Page A14 Rio Vista renovation photo progression…Page A15 Section B - Campus Life/Opinions Section C - Trends Student savings…Page C2 Summer concert preview…Page C2 Guide to outlet malls…Page C2 Local coffee shops…Page C5 Campus technology available for students…Page C6 Peddling around town and campus…Page C7 Central Texas summer tubing guide…Pages C8,9 Pimp My Tube…Page 9 University staff member authors ghost stories…Page C11 Boot-scootin’ swingers photo essay…Page C12 Sudoku…Page C13 Comics…Page C13 Crosswords…Page C13 Section D - Sports News staff, players aim to uplift Texas State basketball…Page D2 River Racer: Local athlete kayaks through Europe…Page D3 Senior softball players take awards…Page D4 Bobcat Softball: A season to remember…Page D5 Bobcat pitcher takes long road to the mound…Page D6 Outfielder considers pro ball over college diploma…Page D6 Bobcat soccer to host SLC tourney…Page D8 Bobcat track and field receives All-SLC honors…Page D9 Summer Fun: Parks and Recreation program list…Page D10 A look at the 2006 FIFA World Cup…Page D11


To all incoming Bobcats and their families, It is my honor to welcome you to Texas State with the first issue of The University Star under my leadership as editor in chief. The paper you have just picked up was created by a very new staff. The only members of last year’s editorial board to return this year are Managing Editor Emily Messer and myself. We are very excited about a new The Star and a new group of readers. It is my hope, and that of the The Star’s staff, that the information included in this issue will help you find your way around the Texas State campus, San Marcos and Central Texas. I’m also hoping The Star will make a good impression and you’ll continue to read it during your years at Texas State. The orientation issue of The Star is geared toward new members of the Texas State community. Freshman New Student Orientation will be held on campus during June and July. This issue of The Star will remain available during those months. Four regular issues of The Star will be published every other week during the summer, beginning on June 15. During the school year, The Star prints on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Regular issues of The Star tend to run between eight and 18 pages. As you can see, this issue of The Star is much larger. Historically, the front cover of the Star’s special issues does not contain any articles and is designed by the paper’s advertising design staff. For this issue, the staff decided to run a specially designed cover for each section. During the school year, you will find covers that look more like those of a traditional newspaper. In this issue, you will find information about what is available to you as a Texas State student. We have included information about on-campus technology, student clubs, what services the LBJ Student Center offers you and much more. I hope you continue to read The Star. I always want to hear your feedback. Compliments and complaints can be sent to Send love letters and send hate letters. I love to read it all. I want The Star to be the voice of Texas State. I want to include all parts of our community in this paper. If you have any interest in writing for The Star, I encourage you to attend our fall orientation. We will be advertising it at the beginning of the semester. This will be an opportunity for potential hires to meet the editors. I’m incredibly excited about the newspaper Texas State will have this year and I’m equally excited to have the opportunity to include you in our community.

Jason Buch Editor in Chief The University Star



Thursday, June 1, 2006

Welcome to the


The University Star - Page A3


Senator Cornyn delivers commencement speech, expounds on ‘virtues of patriotism’


oday you will take away from this experience more than what you’ve learned in the books that you’ve read and the lectures you’ve listened to. In the end, the most important question is not what have you learned, but what have you become?”

— John Cornyn, Republican senator

By Clayton Medford The University Star The intrinsic value of a college education and the need for generosity were the focus of the commencement address given on May 13 to graduating Texas State students from the College of Education and the College of Health Professions by Republican Sen. John Cornyn. The 15-minute speech was brief in comparison to the remainder of the lengthy cerContributed photo emony, but Cornyn held the attention of the thousands in DIPLOMA TIME: Graduates, their friends and family listen to speeches by notable public figures durattendance. ing commencement ceremonies on May 13. The transition from college to life, Cornyn said, will not be easy and will require the skills acquired at the university. “You may have been tempted during your career here to ask the question: Is it really worth For an audio feature of Clayton Medford’s discussion it? You may have completed this journey and arrived here today with Sen. John Cornyn regarding tuition deregulation, wearing your cap and gown because you felt it might help you go to get a better job, or you may have done it to please your parents,” Cornyn said. “I hope you did it


at least in part because you realize that this wonderful education you’ve received here has provided you with tools to make your mark on the world.” Cornyn said the degree acquired by the students symbolizes more than the exams they passed and the classes they took. “Today you will take away from this experience more than what you’ve learned in the books that you’ve read and the lectures you’ve listened to,” he said. “In the end, the most important question is not what have you learned, but what have you become?” Cornyn, currently serving his first term in the U.S. Senate, made numerous references in his address to the value of public service and joked with students, asking for a courtesy call if they intended on running for his seat. In extolling the virtues of patriotism, Cornyn encouraged students to become good citizens. “Patriotism means that we share a belief in something big-

ger than ourselves and that we are willing to sacrifice for that ideal,” he said. “Let your patriotism be demonstrated by your concern for others, by your generosity, affection, by your willingness to serve other people that you may never know and that you may never need.” College of Education graduate Julie Baldwin said she enjoyed Cornyn’s address. “I thought it was great,” Baldwin said. “I thought it was very personal, and it was a very personal speech.” Ending his commencement address with words of encouragement, Cornyn offered the graduating students a challenge and welcomed them to their post-college lives. “Before we leave here today, I challenge each of you to use your God-given talent to lift someone else up, to touch someone else’s life, to set an example for those who follow you and to make a difference,” Cornyn said. “Welcome to the first day of the rest of your life. I know you’ll make the best of it.”

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Thursday, June 1, 2006

Students ‘pack’ up unwanted goods, ‘pass’ them on to needy By Kathy Martinez The University Star The Texas State Community Relations Department and United Way of Hays County teamed up on May 25 to sponsor “Pack It Up and Pass It On,” an annual event intended to match unwanted items normally thrown away by students at the end of the semester with local needy families. “It is absolutely amazing what kind of stuff students decide to throw away. We have clothes with their price tags still on them,” said Holly Lazenby, community relations administrative assistant. At the end of the spring semester, collection barrels were placed in each residence hall and university apartment complexes.The community project was accomplished with the help of more than thirty volunteers picking up donation barrels. Students donated clothes, shoes, linens, kitchen items, carpets, small appliances, computers and electronics. Furniture items were also accepted. “Students are very limited in their ability to give back to the community because of school and work, so this is just a chance for us to create ties with the San Marcos residents,” said Laura Ruiz, education senior and volunteer. Last year, “Pack It Up and Pass It On,” was hosted outside the Aquarena Center, serving more than 1,000 local residents. This year, the event took place in the LBJ Ballroom. Lazenby said volunteers spent three days prior to the event organizing and setting up the items. “The event has grown and we had to move it to the ballroom to accommodate the increasing amount of donation items over the years,” Lazenby said. This is a perfect way for families and local youth to become familiar with the campus, Lazenby said. “Believe it or not, a lot of the people that walk through these doors have never stepped foot on campus and are getting their first glance at the university,” she said. “Hopefully in the future, we can use this event to encourage the youth here in San Marcos to

Aaron Smith/Star photo SORTING THROUGH: Hundreds of needy families from San Marcos shop for free in the LBJ Ballroom.


t is absolutely amazing what kind of stuff students decide to throw away. We have clothes with their price tags still on them.”

— Holly Lazenby, community relations administrative assistant

consider attending Texas State in the future.” Bobby Carmichael, executive director for United Way of Hays County, was also on sight to help organize donation items. “I have been so pleased with the efforts of the university to make this event a success in helping hundreds of families in our community, and of course this could not be done without the students,” Carmichael said. Kim Porterfield, community relations director, said the event normally takes about two hours. “In the past four years of holding this event, everything is gone in the span of a couple hours and the only thing we have left to do is take the tables down,” Porterfield said. San Marcos residents Luisa Gallo and Randa Wagner took advantage of the free shopping day. Gallo heard about “Pack It Up and Pass It On” from flyers her children brought home from

school. Gallo said opportunities like this are appreciated by her family who are not as financially fortunate as others. In her second time attending the event, Wagner said she finds a lot of great things that she and her family can use, especially clothing for her teenage children. “It’s so hard these days. You just can’t afford to live anymore,” Wagner said. San Marcos resident and retired nurse, Donnelle Gooch, accompanied Gaberial Robertson and her family to the event. Gooch, also a member of the St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, said she sponsored Robertson and her family after they relocated to San Marcos from New Orleans 10 months ago. Robertson said she came to San Marcos to seek refuge after losing everything in Hurricane Katrina, including her home. “I’m starting all over again and it is difficult, but I couldn’t have done it without the help of everyone in this community,” Robertson said. Robertson said she is thankful for the university and the students for donating clothes that her children can make good use of in the upcoming school year. “The beauty of this program is that this is the true basic form of recycling as you can get,” Porterfield said. “We are taking very useful and essential items that students no longer need or want and recycling them back into a community that does need them.”


Thursday, June 1, 2006

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Community celebrates reopening of Rio Vista Dam Kayakers, tubers enjoy new attractions at ribbon-cutting ceremony By David Saleh Rauf The University Star After months of anticipation, excitement and curiosity, the wait is finally over. Battling the afternoon heat with hand-held fans, hundreds of river enthusiasts of all ages converged on May 25 at the Rio Vista Dam for the river ribbon cutting ceremony, commemorating the reopening of the dam. “Welcome back to Rio Vista on the San Marcos River,” Mayor Susan Narvaiz said. “I know it’s hot, but moments like this they don’t come often. We dedicate this project to you, the people of San Marcos.” Standing on the newly constructed banks, the mayor and members of the city council threw ceremonial tubes in the water, officially marking the opening. Moments later, the crowd cheered as the first person, riding atop a traditional bright-yellow Lions Club tube, shot down the first of three artificial rapids into a downstream pool and right through the second chute. “The first chute looks like it’s going to be a wicked ride,” said City Councilman John Thomaides. “The changes are amazing. Once you get in there, you’re just going to flip out.” San Marcos resident Belinda VanDyke said her family has been visiting the Rio Vista Dam since they moved to San Marcos in 2000, describing the recent transformation as “absolutely awesome.” “I love it,” VanDyke said. “It’ll allow more people to swim. The park is just going to hold many more people. It was real crowded down here.” After inspectors discovered deep cracks in the dam and eroded foundation material under the dam, Thomaides said, the prospect of repairs came to the city council as an emergency situation, forcing the city to close the dam on November 15. “The words that were used to describe it were: In imminent danger of collapse,” he said. “That got our attention real


he first chute looks like it’s going to be a wicked ride. The changes are amazing. Once you get in there, you’re just going to flip out.”

— John Thomaides, city councilman

quick.” Intially, the city council was presented with two potential options: repairing the dam by simply filling the cracks or a resident-proposed “total face-lift of the entire area,” replacing the dam with artificial rapids. The council rejected the contract for repair of the dam only, opting to rejuvenate the 102-year-old landmark. “The first thing we were presented was the repair,” Thomaides said. “Some citizens came to city council … and told us that their was another option. We all got really excited about the concept and the basic idea in our minds of what it would look like.” David Racino/Star photo Tom Goynes, president of the FREE FLOWING: Tubers and kayakers enjoy the first of three newly constructed tube chutes on May 25 during the highly-anticipated Texas Rivers Protection Association, proposed the renovation opening of the Rio Vista Dam. San Marcos residents gathered to take advantage of the free tubes provided by The San Marcos Lions project to city council in De- Club. cember. “By the time I got rolling, it manager and the Parks & Recs project will be a little more than into the original equation. city’s lifeblood, providing ecowas almost too late. The city was guy for San Marcos.” twice as much as the original “People have to understand nomic development during the already in preliminary discusAlong with the PowerPoint projection of $1 million. that was a separate issue all to- summer. sions with a contracting firm,” presentation, Goynes also ob“We haven’t added all the gether. They were planning on “If we were going to take on Goynes said. “The way they were tained a rendering of the Rio numbers, but we think it will be just repairing the dam,” Goynes something, we had to know that going to repair the dam was they Vista Dam with a superimposed under $2.3 million.” said. “They’ve done a lot of it could be done in a period of were going to add eight feet of whitewater course in the foreThomaides estimated the to- things that weren’t initially time that wouldn’t disrupt that,” lead to the bottom of Rio Vista. ground to present to city coun- tal cost at a higher price. planned.” she said. “That has a long lastIt was going to render it un- cil. “The original estimates for Goynes also cited the city’s in- ing impact on people’s lives if runable to canoes, kayaks and “People started imagining this when we had to say ‘yes’ or sistence on finishing the project you make you’re living, whether really, tubers wouldn’t have what it would look like to have a ‘no’ on emergency was actually by Memorial Day. it’s in tourism, restaurant, you much fun either.” more natural-looking rapid, in- less than the repair of what was “The city always had that at- know, whatever, there would When he realized what was stead of just the same old dam,” there,” Thomaides said. “But titude. They said ‘Well, if it runs have been a financial impact to happening, Goynes contacted he said. “I think that picture, in reality it came out to about over … we don’t care as long as families that we didn’t want to friends in Coloroado who con- more than anything else, kind of three times more — almost $3 it’s done by Memorial Day,’” he see.” struct artificial water rapids and sparked a lot of interest.” million.” said. “It was always a big push A community celebration to whitewater parks. City Manager Dan O’Leary Goynes said the “overruns” to get this thing done before the commemorate the transforma“I was able to have them said half of the renovation proj- can be attributed to additional season. I think when you start tion of Rio Vista Dam is being e-mail me a PowerPoint pre- ect will be paid for by the city expenditures, such as building rushing something, it definitely planned for June 21. sentation and it was kind of a savings account and the other the banks, paying for limestone is going to make the price sky“We’re going to try to plan a last-minute deal, but I got per- half the council borrowed. He boulders and 48-inch diversion rocket.” huge party,” Thomaides said, mission to show that to the city estimates the total cost of the pipes, which were never factored Narvaiz said the river is the “That’s what this calls for.”

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Passage to Peru Assistant professor to work with Professor readies for voyage after reporters, editors in Canada Fulbright program acceptance By Magen Gray The University Star

Bradley Childers The University Star

As she packed her supplies to send to Peru, marketing professor Ruth Taylor tried to figure out what to remove from her growing 50-pound box of books. Taylor, who has been teaching at Texas State for 20 years, was recently selected for a four-week Fulbright Senior Specialists project at the University of Lima Department of Economics and Business Administration, beginning June 5. Taylor said the process began in 2001 when she went on sabbatical with Texas State to work with several Texas businesses Taylor that export goods to other countries. In particular, Taylor’s work with an international catalog led her to attend tradeshows in four Latin countries. During the spring of 2002, Taylor traveled to the Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Peru and Chile, attending business tradeshows in each country. “I wanted to visit a university in each city I went to, just so I could say I’d been there. I met some professors and two directors at the University of Lima,” Taylor said. “Two years later, I received an invitation from the director of external relations and applied for the Fulbright and was approved. Everything processed and 20 months later, I’m going.” During Taylor’s trip, she will conduct 12 seminars, three each week, targeting three different groups — undergraduates, postgraduates, business managers and export officials, teaching them how to use the U.S.-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement. Signed in April by U.S. Trade Representative Rob Portman and Peruvian Minister of Foreign Trade and Tourism Alfredo Ferrero Diez Canseco, the international trade agreement is designed to eliminate tariffs and other barriers to goods and services, expanding trade between the two countries. “The agreement created new opportunities for Peru to assess the U.S. market,” Taylor said. “The organizations I will be working with in Peru are equivalent to our U.S. Department of Commerce.” During the course of the last four years, Taylor said her students have used federally collected and federally published information in their class work and projects, enabling many to receive U.S. Department of Commerce certifi— Ruth Taylor cates along with their degrees. “My greatest success story is a marketing professor recent graduate who was hired by a construction company in San Antonio because her resume stood out among others because of her U.S. Department of Commerce certificate,” Taylor said. “She now works on accounts worth several million dollars and is helping to build American Embassies across the world.” Sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State, the Fulbright program offers a variety of academic disciplines for applicants who must hold a doctorate and at least five years of teaching or professional experience in their applied field. Christine Billingsley, department of marketing administrative assistant, said Taylor is passionate about teaching international marketing, taking every measure to ensure her trip to Peru is a success. “She is doing everything she can to prepare for the trip, including learning Spanish,” Billingsley said. Joshua Hughey, communication studies senior, was Taylor’s student in a marketing class. Compared to other professors, Hughey said Taylor’s real-world experience and level-headed approach in the field of business set her apart. “She is opposite from professors who focus on themselves,” Hughey said. “Her focus is on knowledge — not on her accomplishments.”

Susan Weill, assistant professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, was awarded a Fulbright Senior Specialist grant to work with print and broadcast reporters and editors through Athabasca University in Alberta, Canada from June 12 to July 24. Working with the Aboriginal Multi-Media Society, Weill will collaborate with the newspaper Windspeaker,“Canada’s national Aboriginal news source.” “I hope to help them any way I can,” Weill said in an e-mail.



agreement created new opportunities for Peru to assess the U.S. market. The organizations I will be working with in Peru are equivalent to our U.S. Department of Commerce.”

“So far, workshops focused on interviewing techniques and finding story sources have been requested.” Deborah Steel, editor in chief at Windspeaker, said she is looking forward to working with Weill. “It will be nice to have a fresh perspective on the work that we do,” Steel said in an e-mail. “I’m hoping she can suggest ways for us to make improvements.” This is Weill’s second time as a Fulbright Senior Specialist. Last summer, she taught journalism and worked with volunteer organizations through the Caribbean Institute of Media and Communication at the University of the West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica. “Alberta, Canada will be much different than Jamaica,”

Weill said. “There won’t be hurricanes there this summer and Edmonton will be much cooler than Kingston.” Weill said the opportunity to connect with other cultures is a valuable experience. “My Fulbright assignments are always rewarding for two reasons,” she said. “First of all, the people who take part truly appreciate the opportunity to participate. This makes for a wonderful teaching experience. Also, I tend to learn as much, if not more, than my students because of the intercultural experiences.” Nancy Gainer, director of external relations at the Council

for International Exchange of Scholars, the agency that administers the Fulbright Senior Specialist program, said Weill was an easy choice for grantee. “For this particular program, we’re looking for scholars who can collaborate with overseas counterparts on intense projects. She emerged as a perfect candidate for her field,” Gainer said. “When we have candidates that are really stellar, they’re a perfect fit for institutions of higher learning.” Rick Breland, mass communication graduate and former student of Weill, said she played an integral role in his education as both an instructor and mentor. “Her expertise in the field of


Weill journalism and her past work in giving a voice to the social issues of the disenfranchised are what I’m sure made her an easy choice for the grant,” Breland said in an e-mail. Through her published works, Weill has taken an active role in creating dialogue concerning multicultural groups and advancing racial and gender equality. Two such works are “Black (Only) and White (Only) for Jesus: How White Supremacists Used Religious Pressure in the Deep South to Keep TV Airwaves Free of Positive Interracial Relationship Portrayals, 1940-1970” and “Women’s Press Organizations in Mississippi, 1894present.” Kelly Martinez, print journalism senior, said Weill stays genuinely involved in the students’ progress throughout the semester. “I felt she was trying to be more of a mentor than just an instructor,” Martinez said in an e-mail. “It was really refreshing in comparison to other classes I’ve had.” Since 2003, Weill has served as faculty co-adviser to the Texas State student chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. “Dr. Weill does everything she can to help her students succeed,” Joey Lyons, print journalism senior and SPJ member said in an e-mail. “Her work with the SPJ is invaluable.”

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or this particular program, we’re looking for scholars who can collaborate with overseas counterparts on intense projects. She emerged as a perfect candidate for her field.”

— Nancy Gainer director of external relations at the Council for International Exchange of Scholars

Kymberly Fox, lecturer at the school of journalism and mass communication, said Weill is really interested in working with multicultural groups. “She always finds interesting summer projects that benefit both her and her students,” Fox said in an e-mail. “She gets to do great research over the summer, and then she brings her experiences back to the classroom in the fall.” In the classroom, Weill became a combination of teacher, mentor, career advisor and friend, said Jennifer Warner, mass communication graduate. “Her classes are the ones you will take with you and use every single day of your entire career,” Warner said.

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Thursday, June 1, 2006

THE ULTIMATE CONTRIBUTION Retired SMPD officer remembered for trying to make difference in Iraq By David Saleh Rauf The University Star


udy Mesa is described by his family as a man who was caring and passionate. His peers at the San Marcos Police Department said he was a teacher and a father-figure, possessing an innate ability to create a sense of calm in tense situations. An Army veteran and recently retired SMPD officer who embraced the city of San Marcos with 12 years of dedicated service, the encompassing community tout’s Mesa for having possessed a variety of qualities, including valor, wisdom and a selfless dedication to serve others. Above all, Mesa is remembered in one way — as a hero. “He was a hero to us, but it’s amazing; it appears he’s been a hero to many people,” Lucy Ann Rigby, Mesa’s daughter, said. “He always told us to live everything to the fullest; you don’t know if you have tomorrow.” On May 8, just one month after arriving in Iraq to work as an international police liaison for DynCorp International, an improvised explosive device struck the U.S. military convey Mesa was riding in near Rustamiyah, Iraq, killing him and one American soldier and wounding three others. “He felt like he had a calling. He just felt like he was uniquely set, uniquely qualified to go over there and train Iraqi police officers,” SMPD Chief Howard Williams said. “He wanted to go over there and do his best to get the Iraqi police trained so our guys could come home. In this current conflict that we’re in, he just felt like he owed it to his country to make a contribution. He made the ultimate contribution, unfortunately.” Rigby said her father was passionate about going to Iraq to

Mark Decker/Star photos AN ENTOURAGE OF SUPPORT: (Above) Retired San Marcos Police Officer Rudy Mesa was recently killed in Iraq while serving as an international police liaison. Sheriff’s deputies led the way for the funeral procession. Numerous law enforcement agencies participated in the procession. CLOSE TO HOME: (Left) Mesa’s funeral service was held on May 18 at St. John’s Catholic Church and was attended by a large gathering of friends, family and colleagues.

e felt like “H he had a calling. He

just felt like he was uniquely set, uniquely qualified to go over there and train Iraqi police officers.”

— Howard Williams SMPD Chief

train police officers, leaving the family no option or rebuttal. “He decided to go to Iraq to hopefully make a difference. He’s never stopped me from do-

ing anything in my childhood and I had to agree with him and just hope he was out of harm’s way,” Rigby said. “I have peace with myself knowing that’s what he wanted to do. I know he’s with the Lord now, but the pain will never go away.” Williams said he had a 20minute conversation with Mesa before he left for Iraq. During the conversation, Williams said they talked about Mesa’s years of military and law enforcement training and the inherit risks involved with being in a war zone. “I tried to talk him out of going,” Williams said. “He understood the risk involved. He knew exactly what risks he was going to take. Part of our conversation was that he felt the mission was important enough that the risk he would be taking was out-

weighed by the importance of the mission. It was just that important to him.” DynCorp International, a multi-faceted professional services and project-management company, is contracted with the Department of State to train civilian police overseas and provide police officers for civilian peace keeping operations. Gregory Lagana, senior vice president of Communications and Marketing for DynCorp International, said approximately 700 DynCorp police trainers are in Iraq. “We train the police under a state department and U.S. Military joint program in Iraq and Afghanistan,” he said. International police liaisons, Lagana said, play a vital role in establishing democracies in tu-

multuous regions around the world such as Iraq. “The country is trying to establish a democracy and in a democracy, civilians control the police. Establishing a civilian police force in Iraq is essential,” Lagana said. “If you don’t have a police department that provides people with the security that they believe they need and can function legitimately, it leads to vigilantism and all kinds of violence and the rise of tyranny again.” In lieu of Mesa’s death and the highly publicized deaths of various independent contractors throughout the war in Iraq, Lagana said insurgents are not targeting contractors more frequently than military personnel. “They’re the same risks that other people run — certainly, no greater than the military. In Iraq, I think we understand that there are attacks on the police,” he said. “There are people who are trying to disrupt the emergence of a police force in Iraq, so they’re attacking the police. It makes sense that there looking at the people who are training the police too.” Retired SMPD officer Daniel Misiaszek was originally contracted to work as an international police liaison with Dyncorp Intrenational. However, he said “the contract is no longer in Afghanistan.” Instead he will be working with another company, conducting police training. “I’ll be heading overseas to do the same type of work that Rudy did,” said Misiaszek, who served on the same parol shift as Mesa. “There is a certain element of fear of the unknown.” Misiaszek described Mesa as a top-notch officer.

“Rudy was very mature and he was always very calm and collective regardless of the situation,” Misiaszek said. “He was one of the best officers I’ve ever had the privilege to work with.” Emilio Gonzales, SMPD patrol officer, knew Mesa for 13 years, serving with him in two different law enforcement agencies — the Bexar County Sheriff ’s office and the SMPD. Gonzales said Mesa was a great educator in the field and a great family man. “I’d definitely say he was loving, caring and very much a father figure,” Gonzales said. “I know officer Mesa had grandchildren and great grandchildren. That was his love.” Mesa, 56, is survived by his wife, Veila, four children and five grandchildren. Manuel Aguilar Jr., Mesa’s grandson, said he remembers his grandfather as a caring man who he could approach with any problem. “I remember still as a little kid running to him. He was always there for me,” Aguilar said. “I really miss him and love him. I believe he went to Iraq to teach people over there. I’m very proud of him.” Williams echoed the sentiment, saying the community at large now has a very personal stake in the war. “We’re all very proud of him, that he felt to take on this task. It really drives it home as a very personal affair,” Williams said. “It’s no longer just a headline in the newspaper. We’ve contributed the life of one of our own. You have a sense of involvement, perhaps, in the war that before was just a spectator sport. Now you very much have a sense of personal involvement, because we lost one of our own.”


Thursday, June 1, 2006

The University Star - Page A9

Staying healthy on campus

Precautionary measures best defense against meningitis, mumps By Nick Georgiou The University Star

Effects of meningitis

When Cherice Cochrane was diagnosed with the flu in March 2001, she was told by a physician to take some Tylenol and drink lots of fluid. Cochrane, 20-yearold Tulane University student, did not wake up the next morning — Bacterial meningitis took her life. “This is a silent killer,” Cladudette Cochrane Lewis, Cherice’s mother, said in an e-mail. “Especially for incoming freshman.” Six months after Cochrane’s death, another student in the same dorm died from meningitis, marking Tulane’s third death from the infection. 700 meningitis vaccinations will be sold this fall at the Texas State Student Health Center in an effort to combat the spread of the disease in environments such as college dorm rooms. Caused by either a viral or bacterial infection, Meningitis is an infection of the fluid in the spinal cord and the fluid that surrounds the brain. Symptoms include high fever, vomiting and nausea. Karen Gordon-Sosby, assistant director of the Texas State Health Center, said meningitis gets a lot of attention because the consequences can be very Normal meninges severe. If the infection is not treated or diagnosed early, Sosby Dura mater said, it could lead to permanent Arachnoid disability or death. Pia mater “Within 24 hours someone can be in a hospital and die,” Sosby said. According to the American College Health Association Web site, “the disease strikes nearly 3,000 Americans each year, inMeningitis cluding 100-125 college campuses, leading to 5-15 deaths among college students every year.” The organization also reports those living in residence halls are more likely to acquire Courtesy of WebMD meningitis than the general population, saying 80 percent of college cases are preventable

with a vaccine. Sosby said there have been no reported cases of meningitis at Texas State. Last year, the Student Health Center sold out of 650 meningitis vaccines. This year’s vaccinations will cost $100. Sosby recommends getting the vaccine from the university as opposed to a drug company where it is more expensive. “We’re not making a profit, we’re just covering cost,” said Michael Wilkerson, health education coordinator for the Student Health Center at Texas State. Currently, 32 states require freshman and transfer students living on campus to be immunized against meningitis; Texas is not one of them. However, a Texas law passed in 2001 requires all school-age students to be educated about the infection and the vaccine. Wilkerson said they educate incoming freshmen in a number of ways, including a form explaining the danger of meningitis. Students also receive information throughout orientation and a letter is sent to their guardian encouraging the vaccine. The Student Health Center also works with Residence Life, bringing helpful information to new students. Jim Settle, Residence Life director, said Residence Life facilitates both passive and active programs, providing students with information about many health issues. “Residence Life is very concerned about the health and wellness of all residents,” Settle said in an e-mail. “ (Our staff) participates in many committees, initiatives and other opportunities to help our students learn about making good physical and mental health decisions.” Cameron Freberg, communication studies junior, lived in Jackson Hall for two years and

said the thought of being susceptible to viruses and infections never crossed his mind. He advised taking precautionary measures in the community bathrooms of certain dorms. “Don’t go barefoot in the showers,” Freberg said. Christopher Cox, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention press assistant, advocates healthy habits such as washing your hands well, refraining from sharing eating utensils and regularly cleaning frequently-touched surfaces with soap. “Surfaces of items can also spread viruses if someone who is sick touches them without washing their hand and someone else then touches the same surface and then rubs their eyes, mouth, nose, etc.,” Cox said in an e-mail. The CDC is currently investigating a multi-state mumps outbreak. Currently, 11 states have reported 2,597 confirmed, probable and suspected cases, with the majority of cases occurring in people 18 to 25years-old. “Post-high school educational institutions such as colleges and universities are at an increased risk for mumps transmission because these communities are highly mobile yet tend to concentrate large numbers of persons in living, learning and social environments,” Cox said. The mumps outbreak has not been reported in Texas and the source of the current outbreak has not been identified. Cox said the outbreaks could only begin when there are enough people in an area, school or community who are not immune from the disease. “Many different things affect whether or not an outbreak might begin,” he said. “The best way to prevent a mumps outbreak in a particular area is to make sure everyone in that area has had two doses of the mumps


any different things affect whether or not an outbreak might begin. The best way to prevent a mumps outbreak in a particular area is to make sure everyone in that area has had two doses of the mumps vaccine.”

— Christopher Cox Centers for Disease Control and Prevention press assistant

vaccine.” Becca Wismall, communicable disease coordinator for the Hays County Health Department, said it is difficult to stop the spread of the mumps virus because a person can be infectious before they experience symptoms. “You can go three or four days before you have symptoms,” she said. The mumps is spread by mucus or droplets from the nose or throat of an infected person, usually when they cough or sneeze. Symptoms can include fever, face pain and swelling of the saliva glands. Sosby said the majority of student illnesses at Texas State are mild, with respiratory infections, the flu and the common cold topping the list. Unhealthy habits such as lack of sleep, an unbalanced diet and too much stress, she said, can lead to students getting sick. For more information regarding infections, diseases and viruses, contact the Student Health Center at (512) 245-2161.

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Know your way around the

LBJ Student Center GEORGE’S — The campus bar offers pool, table tennis, live music, big screen television and karaoke. Open Monday through Thursday 9 a.m. to midnight, Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and available for reservations on the weekend. AZTEC PRINTING — T-shirt printing. Open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. BOKO’S LIVING ROOM — Check-out CDs, headphones, blankets, pillows, alarm clocks, magazines, DVDs, VHS tapes and board games. Also sells CD-Rs and floppy disks. Offers televisions and couches. Open Monday through Thursday 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. CLICKS CYBERCAFE — This computer lab has 18 Dell Optiplex GX-150 workstations. Speakers in the lab play music during operation hours. Open Monday through Thursday 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. LYNDON’S — Contains Starbucks, open 7 a.m. to midnight Monday through Thursday and 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Friday, and Blimpie, open 11 a.m. to midnight Monday through Thursday and 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Friday. CHICK-FIL-A — Open Monday through Thursday 7 a.m. to midnight and Friday 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. AMPHITHEATER — Located outside.

BUILDING OPERATIONS — Room 2-15.5 FRESHENS SMOOTHIE COMPANY CONFERENCE SERVICES — The place to go to make reservations for space in the LBJSC. Located in Room 2-12. HAIR FITNESS II — Campus salon. Open Monday through Thursday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Friday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. INFORMATION DESK — Send faxes, buy stamps and envelopes and make copies. Purchase lockers, bus and event tickets. Also has a lost and found and newspapers. Open Monday through Thursday 7:45 a.m. to 11 p.m., Friday 7:45 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. THE LAIR FOOD COURT — Coyote Jack’s, Casa Ortega, Mama Yeh’s, Outtakes, Pizza hut, Socrates Express and Tsunami Sushi. Open Monday through Thursday 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Friday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. PAWS MARKET CONVENIENCE STORE — Open Monday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. STUDENT CENTER OPERATIONS — Room 2-14.4 UNIVERSITY BOOKSTORE— Sells text books, classroom supplies, Texas State clothing and memorabilia and more.

BALLROOM BOOKSTORE UPPER LEVEL MEETING ROOMS BREAK AREAS — Tables and chairs dot the hallway and a patio with a great view of the campus is open. VISITORS CENTER

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The University Star - Page A11


Floor 4


Image courtesy of Media Relations


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CIVILIAN SOLDIERS Members of San Marcos Army Reserve units fighting in Iraq By David Saleh Rauf The University Star


pproximately 8,000 miles separate San Marcos from Baghdad, a cozy cushion for average residents to discuss and observe the war in Iraq. For a special group of residents, one phone call can erase that cushion and make the prospect of war a reality. “It was always in the back of my mind. It wasn’t in the forefront,” said James Settles, 363rd Quartermaster Battalion specialist E-4. “It was a concern; it’s just reality.” Twenty-eight days out of the month they are average civilians, working everyday jobs. When service to their country beckons, this group of civilians becomes something much greater — citizen warriors. During the course of the past three years, soldiers from the San Marcos-based 363rd Quartermaster Battalion and the 13th Corps Support Command reserve element are among the reservists who have been called upon to serve in Iraq. “A lot of people take for granted the fact that these soldiers — they are actually citizen soldiers who put their life on the line, so that we can live the life that we live,” said Richard Williams, Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment 363rd Quartermaster Battalion 1st Sgt. “Any soldier, anywhere, that puts themselves in the line of fire for the country should be honored because we do it so you don’t have to.” Williams said the 363rd QM Battalion as a whole has never been deployed to Iraq. In the last three months, however, 15 to 20 soldiers from the 363rd QM Battalion have been cross-leveled — selected to be deployed with another reserve unit — to go to Iraq. Settles is among them. He joined the reserves after Sept. 11,


o one wants to go, but that’s our job and I was called, and so I went. It was probably one of the most difficult years of my life.”

— Tracy Garder 363rd Quartermaster Battalion chief warrant officer two

describing his experience in Iraq as difficult. “You don’t really realize it until the day comes and they say, ‘get ready to go.’ There’s a lot of emotional difficulties,” Settles said. “I just got engaged four months before the orders came down. We got married a week before I came on order.” While in Iraq, Settles said his daily duties varied, describing the situation as odd. “It was really vague as far as command structure, because a lot of times we didn’t know who to report to,” he said. “It made it difficult for certain things like that.” Settles was eventually crossleveled into a transportation unit, performing convoy escorts. “I escorted military and civilian vehicles,” he said. Settles said the roads in Iraq are the most dangerous place, where he witnessed a number of military conveys get hit by improvised explosive devices — IEDs. “It’s a lot of apprehension before you go out on the road and a lot of apprehension while on the road,” he said. “You don’t really think about any of it until

after the adrenaline stops pumping. You don’t really think about it until after the fact.” Tracy Garder, 363rd QM Battalion unit, was called upon for duty in Iraq. “No one wants to go, but that’s our job and I was called, and so I went. It was probably one of the most difficult years of my life,” Garder said. “Traveling into something that was unknown, life support was difficult. You’re going from, you know, your own home to living in tents with people on top of people, sleeping with your weapon and sirens that go off at 2 a.m.” While in Iraq, Garder said she was the property-book officer for a movement control battalion, coordinating the movement of 31 control teams that were stationed across the country and providing indigenous maintenance support to vehicles stuck on the road. “I was on the road, I was up in the air … whatever it was that they were missing, I was trying to find ways to plug those holes. I would go out and start knocking on doors and say ‘Can you guys help me get these guys oil filters, can you help me get them tires?’” Garder said. “Wherever there was a hole, or wherever they were not being logistically supported, I would come in and say ‘What can you do to help me?’” Garder said the area she was based in received daily mortar strikes. “That kind of thing was a daily occurrence. They used to call it mortaritaville,” she said. “When you were on the road, you just got hit. You just got hit and did the best you could. I was very lucky my vehicle was never hit, but every convoy I had been in got hit.” For her service in Iraq, Garder was awarded the Bronze Star Medal. San Marcos Mayor Susan

Narvaiz said she feels a sense of pride knowing the community has sons and daughters who are willing to take up the cause, returning a sense of patriotism to the community that might not be present if this “whole event wasn’t happening.” “As a community it brings you together. I believe it builds a strong sense of community and a sense of responsibility for each other,” Narvaiz said. “Many citizens will give when we’re going to do a send-off (for the military). They’ll find ways to gather supplies and gifts, or things that might be needed.” In 2003, the community of San Marcos gave a big sendoff to 36 soldiers from the 13th component corps support command — COSCOM — reserve element being deployed to Iraq. Upon returning from Iraq, the unit received a parade from the San Marcos community in appreciation for their service. Currently, the 13th COSCOM reserve element unit is among five Texas units that have been alerted for mobilization in support of the ongoing war in Iraq. Approximately 75 soldiers who report to the unit have been called up and sent to Ft. Hood for additional training prior to deployment. “They are as professional a bunch of soldiers as I’ve ever served with,” said Lloyd Willis, unit administrator of Headquarters and Headquarters Company 13th COSCOM reserve element. “With very few exceptions, I wouldn’t hesitate to have any of these soldiers serving with me in combat.” Willis said the unit is set to deploy to Iraq some time in the late summer or early fall, but did not give an exact date. “I’m not at liberty to say. If I knew, I couldn’t tell you,” Willis said. “That’s about the only part of this stuff they keep classified anymore.”

Aaron Smith/Star photo UNRESERVED: 363rd Quartermaster Battalion Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment specialist E-4 James Settles recently spent a year-long tour in Iraq which ended in October of 2005. Settles, an active member of San Marcos’ Army Reserve Unit, helped escort military convoys across Iraqi roads.


Thursday, June 1, 2006

ACC petition invalidated by allegations of forgery By Clayton Medford The University Star Hays County Elections Administrator Joyce Cowan has received 69 affidavits from people claiming their signature was forged on a petition circulated last fall. The petition, placed on the May 13 election ballot, sought a measure that would annex the San Marcos Consolidated Independent School District into the Austin Community College taxing district. ACC officials pulled the measure in April after several alleged forgeries on the petition were reported, including the signatures of several deceased people. The 69 affidavits invalidate the petition, Cowan said, since only 65 signatures more than the required 1,898 were certified by college trustees. Cowan said the receipt of affidavits has declined since the election was cancelled, but she encourages anyone who believes their signature was forged to sign an affidavit claiming so. “Anybody that wants to come in and sign an affidavit, come in,” Cowan said. “Most people know they can do this.” Local steering committee ACC/Yes! hired political consultant Mark Littlefield to gather the signatures in San Marcos. Albert Sierra, cochair of the committee and San Marcos Housing Authority director, said the committee confided in Littlefield. “He came to us with credentials that said he’d done all this before. He was going to run our campaign and get fliers out and get our information out,” Sierra said. Littlefield was unavailable

he thing we “T need to do is bring it before the people. If the people want it, they will vote for it.”

— Albert Sierra co-chair of the ACC/Yes! committee

for comment. Sierra said his group will retain more control over the process if another push for annexation is made. “I think that if it was to be done all over again, the committee should be in charge of collecting the signatures,” Sierra said. “Even if we hire a consultant, we should be in charge.” Sierra plans to meet with ACC officials in June to discuss the future of annexation, saying he is confident the annexation will pass if San Marcos voters are allowed to decide. “The thing we need to do is bring it before the people. If the people want it, they will vote for it,” Sierra said. ACC spokesperson Veronica Obregon said the school will rely on Sierra’s group to garner the support it needs for annexation. “We always maintained that this is a community driven issue and it will be decided by the people in the community,” Obregon said. “From the get go, there has been support for annexation.” Obregon said ACC has never had similar problems with initiatives such as the San Marcos annexation.

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U.S. Department of Education grant to be used to establish new international business program Funds to enhance Texas-Latin American economic connection By Kathy Martinez The University Star U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar recently announced a grant from the U.S. Department of Education for Texas State that will develop a new business and international education program in the McCoy College of Business Administration. The $163,233 grant will fund the program’s first two years, developing a five-year integrative program that will include a bachelor’s degree in International Studies and an MBA with an emphasis in international business. “As our world is globalizing, it is essential that programs like this are developed to prepare our students for the future of international business,” Cuellar said. He said the program will open many doors for students and for Texas State. “Texas State is growing and the university has always been extremely active in trying to get federal funding for their academic programs,” Cuellar said. “This grant is indicative of that persistence.” A second component of the program will involve participation with the existing Sister Cities Trade and Investment Promotion relationship between San Marcos and the northern Mexican city of Monclova. The university will partner with the San Marcos Chamber of Commerce and the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce to work with existing counterparts in Monclova, exploring the potential for international business opportunities. John Mogab, director of the Center for Latin American Commerce, said there is a great deal of economic interdependence between Texas and northern Mexico. The manufacturers will be surveyed, Mogab said, to determine potential business and investment opportunities, and a trade mission will be held, bringing together the business

leaders from Central Texas and northern Mexico to pursue potential business partnerships. “The SCTIP project initially will develop a database of manufacturing in Central Texas and northern Mexico,” he said. Richard Garza, president of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, said the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the San Marcos Chamber of Commerce have not had the essential resources or the time to catalog


exas State is growing and the university has always been extremely active in trying to get federal funding for their academic programs. This grant is indicative of that persistence.”

— Henry Cuellar U.S. representative

different types of prospective industries in Monclova. “We hope that this program will give undergraduate and graduate students the opportunity to assist us in gathering the information we need to build a stronger matrix of relations with industry in Monclova,” Garza said. Phil Neighbors, president of the San Marcos Chamber of Commerce, said the program is a chance for students to develop a mutual understanding for both industries. “The world is getting smaller and the necessity for international business dealings is growing,” Neighbors said. “Students will gain knowledge of the changing workforce and ultimately be able to take part in the competitive job market of

international business.” Mogab said the program plans to create three new graduate international business courses, along with student scholarships and stipends to help fund student exchange opportunities and research projects in international business. A proposal was submitted to the Department of Education’s Business and International Education Program in November 2005, Mogab said. The proposal was evaluated by a panel of nationally recognized international and business educators who award the grants on the basis of the panel’s ranking. “We will immediately begin the process of submitting the proposal for the new program to the university administration,” Mogab said. “We hope to get the proposals approved as quickly as possible, so that we can begin offering the five-year international studies business program within the next year.” Faculty members will receive course releases, giving them time to develop the new international business courses, Mogab said. The grant will also provide funding for faculty members to attend development conferences related to the courses being created. In addition, the grant will fund research stipends to support new faculty research projects in the field of international business. Denise Smart, dean of the McCoy College of Business Administration, said she looks forward to the partnership with the International Studies program. “The grant enhances our Latin American business program and allows

Cuellar us to provide new educational opportunities for our students and contribute to economic understanding and development.”


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Commissioners Court sets tax rate, oversees community development

Annual Bicycle Round Up to clean up campus, help prevent theft, pawning By Nick Georgiou The University Star The University Police Department’s Community Awareness and Resource Team will scour the Texas State campus this summer and remove unregistered bicycles as part of its annual Bicycle Round Up. UPD officer Otto Glenewinkel said students received notice of the bicycle round up through e-mail and fliers 30 days in advance. “We go as far as anybody can be expected to register bikes on campus,” he said. “People don’t need to be leaving their property on campus.” If a bike is not registered by Monday, it is removed and stored by UPD for 120 days. During the four-month period, students can claim their bicycles from UPD. Unclaimed bicycles will be sold during an auction at the University Warehouse in October. Money made from the auction goes back into a general Texas State fund, said Roque Prado, materials-management supervisor. Glenewinkel said the excuses

students give for leaving their bicycles on campus range from “I forgot,” to “I don’t care about the bike,” to “I’m just going to buy another one.” He said bike registration could eventually become mandatory in the next three years. Manuel Rivera, biology senior and bike rider, said mandatory registration for bicycles is ridiculous. “It’s blowing things out of proportion,” he said. Glenewinkel, however, said bike registration makes it much easier for both UPD and the bike owner. He said when a student registers his or her bike it helps prevent theft, which is highest during the summer. Upon registration, the UPD collects the owner’s information, brand name, model, wheel and frame size, color, general description and serial number, enabling UPD to track stolen bicycles. In a press release sent last year by Sgt. Chris Cost, he said UPD was able to locate several stolen bikes in area pawnshops because the bikes had been registered with the UPD. In addition to preventing

Kathy Martinez The University Star

Courtney Addison/Star file photo THE ‘SPOKE’N WORD: After issuing notices to students 30 days in advance, the University Police Department’s Community Awareness and Resource Team will be searching the campus this summer for unregistered bikes, which will be impounded for 120 days.

theft, Glenewinkel said the bicycle roundup helps beautify the school and allows new students to have a place to park their bikes. The roundup was started three years ago because of large number of abandoned bikes left on campus. Cost said it was common for UPD to come across bikes that appeared to have been abandoned for several years. “These abandoned bikes created an eyesore to the beautiful Texas State campus,” Cost said. The UPD found one bicycle they estimated had been sitting outside a residence hall for approximately eight years. Glenewinkel said some parts of the bike just seemed to disintegrate.

The UPD collected approximately 100 bikes the first year and 50 bikes last year. UPD expects roughly 30 bikes this year. The bicycle roundup inevitably draws criticism from some students. “I think it’s unfair for those who, by accident, leave their bikes on campus,” Rivera said. Glenewinkel said some think the bicycle roundup is a good idea, and some think it’s a bad idea. “We always get mixed messages and feelings,” he said. To register your bike or obtain additional information, contact the UPD’s Community Awareness and Resource Team at (512) 245-8341.

Associated Student Government works for students By Clayton Medford The University Star The Associated Student Government operates as a liaison between the student body and the university administration. ASG senators author legislation that seeks to advance student causes and promote student well-being. One such piece of legislation was authored in the spring by ASG president-elect and economics senior Kyle Morris. The resolution, titled “Fairness for All,” calls on the Interfraternity Council and several university administration offices to “revisit, reanalyze, and reassess” the suspension of five fraternities including three large organizations, Sigma Alpha Epsilon, Tau Kappa

Epsilon and Pi Kappa Alpha. Debate on this resolution lasted an hour and a half and drew criticism of the legislation from IFC members and criticism of the administration from ASG members. Controversy was sparked by the passage and ultimate veto of legislation that denounced Proposition 2, the marriage definition amendment to the Texas Constitution. In Fall 2005, accounting senior and then-Student Sen. Jeff Moody authored “Vote NO to Discrimination,” a resolution that was adopted after a lengthy debate between ASG senators and members of various gay and lesbian student organizations. Then-ASG President Jordan

Thursday, June 1, 2006

Anderson vetoed the legislation one week later, citing a lack of support from the student body as reason. “I don’t feel (debating the legislation) was a waste of time; I feel we went about it the wrong way,” Anderson said in the Nov. 8 issue of The University Star. “We don’t appeal to a certain group of people without trying to get the opinion of the rest of the student body.” Moody resigned from ASG after the veto. During the Spring 2006 semester, ASG worked with Auxiliary Services on a contract extension with bus service provider Cognisa Transportation that included the purchase of new buses. After ASG approved the

contract extension, the student body overwhelmingly approved a resolution granting authority to the university administration to extend the Cognisa contract. The five officers and more than 30 ASG senators passed 36 pieces of legislation during the 2005-2006 school year. ASG heard from many local politicians during the spring semester, including candidate for 428th District Judge Anna Martinez Boling, Hays County Judge Jim Powers and San Marcos Mayor Susan Narvaiz. ASG conducts open meetings at 7 p.m. every Monday in the LBJ Student Center, Room 3-14.1. Applications for senator can be downloaded at www.asg.

The Hays County Commissioners hold court and discuss various agenda items at 9 a.m. every Tuesday at the county Court House. The Court consists of five members: one commissioner for each of Hays County’s four precincts and a county judge who presides over the court. The court’s current elected officials include Commissioner Debbie Ingalsbe, Precinct 1, Commissioner Susie Carter, Precinct 2, Commissioner Will Conley, Precinct 3 and Commissioner Russ Molenaar, Precinct 4. Jim Powers is the current Hays County judge. Much of the court’s daily business involves policy making, administration of county offices and coordination with other elected officials.

“Our job as commissioners is to ensure that we are meeting the needs and addressing the concerns of our constituents in the precincts that we each represent,” Carter said. Commissioners Court meetings are open to the public and begin with public comments from the audience who have concerns regarding particular agenda items. Carter said the role of the court is integral to community and economic development in the county. The court also approves the annual county budget, sets the county tax rate and oversees much of the development activity, such as subdivision planning. More information regarding the court along with a weeklyposted agenda can be found at

Faculty senate seeks to serve interests of the university community By Clayton Medford The University Star The faculty senate at Texas State manages promotion and tenure guidelines, recommends faculty seeking developmental leave and is a liaison between the faculty and the administration. The 16-member body meets regularly with university President Denise Trauth and Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Perry Moore as well as many other university

administrators. Issues addressed by the senate during the Spring 2006 semester included the establishment of a single class withdrawal date on the first day after 60 percent of the semester and the creation of the senior lecturer position and subsequent elimination of the title of instructor. The faculty senate is chaired by criminal justice professor Bill Stone and meets Wednesdays from 4 to 6 p.m. in Room 880 of the J.C. Kellum Building.

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Page A15 - The University Star

A new look

Rio Vista renovation

DAM DEADLINE: (Left) Contractors hired by the city of San Marcos work to stay on target for the projected May 25 opening of the remodeled Rio Vista Dam. WATERGATE: (Below) Renovations to the Rio Vista Dam include artificial rapids, downstream pools and new embankments. ROUGH WATERS: (Below right) Kayakers and swimmers share the rapids while trying to avoid colliding during the grand opening of the Rio Vista Dam. A CRUMBLING LANDMARK: (Bottom) Century-old Rio Vista Dam shown prior to renovations. Deep cracks in the structure forced the dam’s closure in November 2005.

Deleigh Hermes/Star photo

Deleigh Hermes/Star photo

David Racino/Star photo

Star ďŹ le photo

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06 01 2006 Section A