VOLUME 101, ISSUE 85
Defending the First Amendment since 1911
WEDNESDAY GO NE ONLI NOW
JUNE 27, 2012
Another man’s treasure...
Robert Schmid, Texas Parks and Wildlife Fish Hatchery manager, collects discarded items from the river and uses them to create art. Visit UniversityStar.com to check out some of his work.
Senator speaks to campus about education By Taylor Tompkins Assistant News Editor
Texas State is being fined $17,150 by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality for failure to report emissions tests.
Kathryn Parker, Staff Photographer
Texas State pays fine for past violations By Karen Zamora News Reporter Texas State has paid the price for failing to follow proper protocol after installing new boilers. Two failed boilers left a portion of the university without hot water for a week in the spring of 2009. They were replaced, but before new boilers are installed and operational, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality requires the university to perform
pre-tests and report them to the TCEQ — something Texas State failed to do. Consequentially, the TCEQ fined Texas State $17,150 in air quality violations, which include “failure to conduct initial compliance testing after the boilers were installed and failure to notify the TCEQ before the boilers were operating,” according to the case document. Juan Guerra, associate vice president of facilities, said the TCEQ noticed these violations in the summer of
2011 during a routine inspection of the Cogeneration Power and Chiller Plant, located near Matthews Street Parking Garage. Guerra said two new boilers were supposed to be tested, and all air emissions should have been sampled. The manager of the Cogeneration Power and Chiller Plant hired contractors to do most of the work, but did not hire anyone to run the tests, Guerra said.
READ BOILERS, Page 3
The Texas State and San Marcos community is becoming acquainted with a new leader. State Sen. Judith Zaffirini (D-Laredo) spoke on June 20 to a crowded room of San Marcos residents, city officials and the Texas State community. Zaffirini represents District 21, which now includes Texas State along with other parts of Hays County after last year’s state redistricting. “I felt initially that I had to go to these new counties and apologize and say ‘I’m sorry that they did this to you,’” Zaffirini said. “But after this warm welcome I don’t feel like apologizing at all.” Zaffirini has been in the Senate since 1987. She is the second highest rated senator and is chair of the Senate Higher Education Committee. She has cast more than 40,000 consecutive votes in her career as a senator and has perfect attendance in the senate. “She is a public servant,” said Brian McCall, Texas State system chancellor. “She does things for the right reasons. She digs deep. She studies issues.” Mayor Daniel Guerrero, San Marcos city councilmembers and Associated Student Government President and Vice President Nathan McDaniel and Alison Sibley were also in attendance. Zaffirini stressed the need for bipartisanship within the senate during her speech, and praised Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst for his work with herself and other Democrats. She also spoke on her belief that education should be a priority in Texas, and that educational facilities should strive for excellence. “To be perfectly frank with you, if I were governor, my number one priority would be to redefine education as a right, not as a privilege, to include early education so that all of our children can start first grade
READ ZAFFIRINI, Page 2
Hays, Travis counties to expand State Highway 45 By Taylor Tompkins Assistant News Editor Expansion plans for State Highway 45 Southwest are set to continue, despite their removal from the Imagine Austin plan by the Austin City Council. The council voted at a June 14 meeting to take out the expansion from the city’s comprehensive master plan per the recommendation of the Citizens Advisory Task Force. Mark Jones, Hays County Precinct 2 commissioner, said this does not affect the Commissioners Court’s plans for the highway expansion because Travis County
will have the final say on whether it will be built. The project is still on the table with the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (CAMPO), allowing Hays County to continue to move forward with joint plans with Travis County. The estimated $17 to $20 million project will connect Loop 1, also known as MoPac Expressway, to FM 1626 with a two to three lane county road. Hays County commissioners offered to spend up to $5 million on the project last year and renewed their support of the offer in a unanimous vote during a June 12 meet-
ing. Jones said the Texas Department of Transportation has a plan to build a six-lane toll road covering the same stretch of land, but the county road is needed to alleviate traffic issues in Hays County sooner than the projected date of TxDOT’s construction. “It’s still in their 2035 plans as a toll road,” Jones said. “In the future if (TxDOT) wants to expand that road, it will already be there (as a county road) and it will be a little bit easier to get it done then.” John Casares, Staff Photographer Ray Whisenant, Precinct 4 com- Austin City Council rejected a plan to expand the Highway 45 in Travis County. The proposed expansion is intended to provide Hays County residents with READ HIGHWAY, Page 3 easier access to Austin.
Multi-million dollar Alkek renovations in foreseeable future
Kathryn Parker, Staff Photographer
Texas State will be conducting new renovations for the library, including the Alkek Library Learning Commons and Alkek Library Repository. By Megan Carthel News Reporter Texas State’s Albert B. Alkek library has not seen many renovations since its opening — the library administration and university are planning to change that. The university hired the Boston-based Perry Dean Rogers firm to conduct a feasibility
study of the library last fall. The group made four visits to the campus starting September 2011, meeting with staff and students for input. Perry Dean Rogers estimates the library is currently undersized by 35,949 square feet. The firm projects it will be undersized by 74,935 square feet in five years and by 136,939 square feet in 10 years.
The results of the feasibility study show Alkek came up short in the number of seats available for students, learning spaces and information technology infrastructures. The library failed building codes for heating and cooling systems, lighting, stair handrails and alarm systems. Mark Freeman, project architect for Perry Dean Rogers, said the building is not unsafe, but building codes change and must be kept up with. “The university has been growing and the library has been growing along with it,” Heath said. “We had reached the point where space was getting to be an issue.” Renovations will be made in three phases over several years. Joan Heath, associate vice president of Alkek library, estimates the first two phases will cost approximately $14 million. Nearly $4 million will be dedicated solely to upgrading the infrastructure of the library. The first phase of renovation includes creating an estimated $2.5 million “learning commons” on the entry-level floor of Alkek, with more multimedia technology, research facilities, new furniture and possibly a café. “The library is not just a place where you walk in and study quietly,” Heath said. “Students are using computer technology and multimedia equipment.” The “learning commons” area will provide students with more access to this type of technology. Lori Hughes, administrative director at Alkek, said this concept is one of
many that other libraries have already embraced. The amount of books, media files and other content in the library is increasing along with student enrollment every year, but the square footage of Alkek is not. To make more room for learning spaces and group study areas, the university plans to build a repository to house some of the lesser-used printed volumes. According to the university campus construction website, the Alkek Library Repository is envisioned as a 13,000 square foot facility with expansion possibilities for an additional 20,000 square feet. It will include book storage, a document intake and processing area, offices and a conference room. The estimated $5.9 million project will be located at the upcoming STAR (Science, Technology, and Advanced Research) Park at McCarty Lane and Hunter Road. Once the repository is completed, along with the first two renovation phases, the third phase can begin. Heath said she would like to begin the planning and finalization stages of the renovation project by the next academic year, but the timeline remains undetermined until sufficient funding is received. “Hopefully we’re going to get to do this relatively soon,” Heath said. “I think we could just improve upon (the library) so much if we did this renovation and hopefully we will get a chance to do it.”
2 | Wednesday June 27, 2012 | The University Star
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Texas State English professor By Adrian Omar Ramirez News Reporter Rebecca Bell-Metereau, a Texas State English professor, has won the Democratic nomination for the District 5 spot on the State Board of Education. She will face the incumbent, Republican Ken Mercer, in the general election Nov. 6. Bell-Metereau unsuccessfully ran for the state board in 2010. She and fellow Democratic candidate Judy Jennings are in the process of trying to dismiss a lawsuit stemming from their earlier campaigns. David Barton, a conservative historian and activist whom the board has consulted as an expert, filed a defamation case against Bell-Metereau and Jennings. The case involved a satirical YouTube video in which Bell-Metereau and Jennings accused Barton of being “known for speaking at white-supremacist rallies.” AR: How do you feel now that the primary is over? RBM: It feels pretty good to know
who my opponent is. We’re working on getting out to new cities like Kerrville, and I’m going to be on the back of a float for Fredericksburg’s Fourth of July parade. We’re looking forward to things like that. They’re fun. AR: What’s different in 2012 from your 2010 run? RBM: I’m working with different strategies, like using social media more. Since funding is being channeled into this lawsuit, we’re thinking of more economical ways to do things. I raised more money than Mercer in 2010, so this is not about money, but how I get the word out. We’re using more cost-effective networking, because it’s about getting out the vote, particularly in Mexican-American communities. AR: Do you think this case will hurt your election? RBM: I have really good lawyers doing footwork for my legal defense fund. We’ve had fundraisers, and I’m really a lot happier knowing so many
people go out to these events. I don’t know when or what they’ll decide or what. Barton has a lot of money, but has made a lot of mistakes. We have a right to critique his version of history, and we would hate to see this chill free speech. AR: How does November look to you? RBM: I think the election looks better than 2010. I have UT now, and part of Austin up to 2222, so this is just a matter of voters being informed. What is at stake is a rational educator’s approach to up-to-date science and well-rounded history. We can’t have people undermining public education. The people trying to get on the State Board of Education don’t value public education. AR: What is your biggest piece of advice to students? RBM: I hope students are all registered and get out to vote. Recent laws have made voting difficult. Voting should be easier, not harder.
Nursing program receives five-year accreditation By Gregory Tate News Reporter Texas State’s Bachelor of Science in nursing program has been granted accreditation for five years by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education’s board of commissioners. Texas State’s St. David’s school of nursing graduated its first class of students this May. Due to the recent national accreditation, the class of 2012 and all subsequent classes for the next five years will be able to assert they graduated from a program with highly certified principles. Accreditation is a voluntary method that most four-year universities participate in. National accreditation assures quality and standardization in a nursing program. A panel of reviewers visited the school to see if it met the necessary criteria to become accredited, as well as to meet with faculty, staff and students. Marla Erbin-Roesemann, director of St. David’s school of nursing, said their recent accreditation is a sign of excellence. Barbara Covington, associate professor in the school of nursing, said receiving five years of accreditation
is a rare occurrence. New nursing schools typically receive two to three years of accreditation because resources are not usually in place. Texas State’s program, however, was fully equipped to meet all of the necessary requirements. “When they walked in and saw all the resources we had in the program, they were just absolutely thrilled,” Covington said. “Texas State really supported us and the program shined.” A benefit of this accreditation is the added capability of the school to apply for financial grants and scholarships for nursing students, Covington said. Another benefit is that the school will show up on national listings of accredited schools of nursing. This means any military students pursuing a Bachelor of Science in nursing can now apply to Texas State’s program under various military scholarships. Covington said the school’s curriculum was designed to seek national accreditation. “We’re trying to stay at the leading edge for our nursing program,” Covington said. Covington said the school hopes to
offer a Master’s of Science in nursing within the next two years. Marylyn Kajs-Wyllie, clinical associate professor at St. David’s school of nursing, said the accreditation is going to help the school achieve its vision. She said graduating from an accredited school helps with the licensing exam nursing students take, and this added achievement is going to increase the legitimacy of the program. St. David’s school of nursing opened in 2009 and only accepts 100 students for enrollment into the program yearly. However, for the fall of 2012 about 1,000 pre-nursing students will be coming to Texas State, said Erbin-Roesemann. “It is very competitive,” ErbinRoesemann said. “Nursing is not just about giving a few shots and changing a few bed pans. Nurses have to be smart. We’ve not accepted any students who don’t have at least a 3.0 GPA.” Erbin-Roesemann urges incoming freshmen to study hard if they hope to be accepted into the school of nursing.
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Austin Humphreys, Photo Editor
State Sen. Judith Zaffrini speaks June 20 at Bobcat Stadium about Texas State’s status as an emerging research institution and her dedication to college education for Texas students. on an even playing field, and to include higher education so that all of the students of Texas can have tuition-free higher education,” Zaffirini said. “I believe that from the bottom of my heart.” Texas State strives for excellence, which is evident in achievements such as the opening of the 38-acre STAR Park off McCarty Lane and Hunter Road, she said. “I am proud to talk about excellence, and if you want to call me an elitist, go right ahead,” Zaffirini said. “That is the standard I hope you will always strive for
and have been striving for at Texas State.” Zaffirini said Texas State is Texas’ best kept secret in higher education, which will soon no longer be a secret under McCall, University President Denise Trauth and herself. “It’s now time to strive for the next goal,” Zaffirini said. “I think that at some point, you all need to redefine your goal to become a national research university, the next level, one of the best in the State of Texas.”
It makes you smarter.
News | The University Star | Wednesday June 27, 2012 | 3
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1
“I can assume they were going to do it themselves, but they never did,” Guerra said. Bill Nance, vice president of finance and support services, said the utility plant manager was fired for making the violations, and four other employees either resigned or retired because they were “not paying attention to detail.” Guerra said it was essential for the university to bring in a new team that would be “more capable of managing all the utility operations.” He received notice of additional past violations, which also added to the dismissal of the five employees.
Nance said the fine was paid in March, and the TCEQ finalized the paperwork May 30. Guerra said the fine was paid for through his utility operating budget. He said students’ tuition and fees did not pay for the fine. Guerra said Texas State is being compliant with fixing the problem. The TCEQ will test the boilers for air quality this summer, even though Texas State has already done so, he said. Nance said the violations are classified under the air quality component of the TCEQ, but Texas State “did not pollute the air.”
“Do we have an air quality problem? I don’t think we do, because our emissions comply, we just never filed a report proving that,” Guerra said. “We are in the process of doing that this summer.” Guerra said changes have been made so he has records of all air emissions tests and annual reports. He said a lesson he has learned is the importance of updating records and tests periodically and keeping track of those records. Andrea Morrow, TCEQ spokesperson, said the fine is the only repercussion for the violations since Texas State has been compliant.
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missioner, said the project is aimed toward safety for daily and family commuting. The road will be a way for Hays County residents to get easier access into Austin, Jones said. “This isn’t for future growth, this is for the growth we already have,” Jones said. “This is an important thoroughfare for people to get from Hays County to Travis County and vice versa. It’s kind of a quality of life issue – it gets people off the road where they are idling and not moving, which is causing more air pollution.” Margaret Cooper, chair of the
steering committee for Imagine Austin’s Citizens Advisory Task Force, said via email the committee was split on their decision of including the expansion project in the master plan. She said some members felt the projected traffic needs and population density over the next thirty years favored the roadway to ease congestion. However, other members were concerned about putting a roadway over an aquifer. They felt inadequate research had been done to assess the possible environmental effects of increased traffic and pollution runoff
from the roadway over time into the aquifer, Cooper said. In addition, the increased development likely to occur as a result of the roadway located over the aquifer presented a concern to some task force members, Cooper said. A majority of the task force voted to leave the highway extension off the growth concept map. Travis County commissioners are expected to pick up the issue in late August or September to decide whether or not to accept Hays County’s offer.
6 | Wednesday June 27, 2012 | The University Star
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Boiler fine reveals need for greater attention to procedure
Kara Ramer, Star Illustrator
rustration should be boiling over in the wake of Texas State’s embarrassing oversight, which cost multiple people their jobs and the school more than $17,000. According to information from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, Texas State was fined $17,150 for two offenses. The first was failing to notify the TCEQ before two new water boilers were operational. The second was failing to perform an official compliance test after the boilers were installed on campus. The new boilers were put into place after a boiler went out and left the residence halls without hot water for two weeks in the winter of 2009. Texas State officials need to ensure that proper procedures and designated tests for campus projects are successfully completed. The employees working on the boiler at the Cogeneration Power and Chill Plant should have better communication skills, proper incident training and knowledge on the TCEQ policies. These improvements would ensure an official boiler test and report do not slip through the cracks again.
Although the university’s lapse did not pollute the air, the fine by the TCEQ is still damaging. Since the plant employees failed to test the boilers and sample the air emissions, a few of the workers have retired, resigned or been fired from their positions. According to a June 27 University Star article, some of the employees had additional violations in the past. Small operational oversights do happen, but a fine of this scale could have been avoided by ensuring that reliable and trained officials are on hand at the plant. Money is tight everywhere at the university level, and the $17,000 fine from the utility operating budget would have been better served easing strain elsewhere. Members of the custodial staff may soon be working night hours and cleaning more buildings filled with more people than ever, and that money may have helped ease the burden on them. The university cannot go back and undo the past. Lessons need to be learned from errors. Although no student tuition and fees went to pay the $17,150 fine, the utility operating budget felt the burden financially. The boiler incident should be an example of why Texas State should tighten up its relationship with the TCEQ. The university needs to make sure designated plant employees are aware and on
the same page about the regulated boiler standards. Almost 100 other entities were also fined by the TCEQ, according to the same May 30 TCEQ violation report. Dow Chemical Company in Brazoria County was given a $207,378 fine for five reporting violations and one related to exceeding annual allowable emission rates. Texas State has no excuse for environmental violations given the significance of the San Marcos community, even when $17,150 seems a small price to pay when compared to other’s fines. The university is surrounded by precious natural resources such as the Edwards Aquifer and the San Marcos River. Because of this, extra preparation should always be taken with campus boilers to keep the community as eco-friendly as possible.
The Main Point is the opinion of the newspaper’s editorial board. Columns are the opinions of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the full staff, Texas State UniversitySan Marcos Student Media, the School of Journalism and Mass Communication or Texas State University-San Marcos.
Advice for incoming freshmen: enjoy, learn
By Ariella Hannon Opinions Columnist
here are a few important pieces of advice that every college freshman should know when transitioning from high school to a big university. As a junior this year, I personally wish someone had passed this advice on to me. Stay true to yourself, be open to opportunities around you, and never abuse the freedom college brings. Many people say who you become in college is who you will be for the rest of your life. While I don’t think that is completely true, the person you were in high school is not who you are anymore. You will grow as a person with everything you experience in
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life, as long as you remain true to yourself. People can get wild in college – you might participate in activities you never thought of, but your personal standards should not be lowered by the change surrounding you. With all the adjustments occurring, there will be a plethora of new opportunities including studying abroad, internships, jobs and professor-student bonds. Although you may have never considered participating in those activities and fostering those relationships before, do it. If you visit another country and immerse yourself in its culture, you will not regret a dime. Get to know your professors, because someday you might need them for a letter of recommendation, a job or a friendship. If you have a 30-minute commute to get to an unpaid internship, do not fret. You got experience from the internship and something to add to a commendable résumé. Do not worry about money or the debt you might get in during the next four years. You are probably going to have debt, but you will pay it off eventually. Worrying about money adds stress, and finals and midterms are bad enough. If there is an opportunity, take it. Regret will be worse than
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paying off debt. Most importantly, handling increased responsibility is what every parent worries about when a child moves away to college. Being able to take care of yourself for the first time without having to answer to anyone is a lot of responsibility. No one is there to clean up after you or tell you when to go to bed. Living on your own is awesome, but be wise in your decisions. Eating habits in college are horrible and sleeping habits are even worse. Classes are the most important aspect of college – the whole college experience is a plus. Have fun, but think about your future as well. Four years goes by fast. Enjoy what you can, and accomplish what you want to do. There is a lot of important information to know about college. Learn what you can on your own, and listen when someone with experience teaches you. Orientation may not be your idea of a fun weekend, but the university staff has important information you need to consider. No matter what, be who you are, do not worry about money, and take the opportunity to learn what you can and cannot do. Good luck!
The University Star is the student newspaper of Texas State University-San Marcos and is published every other Wednesday in the summer semesters. It is distributed on campus and throughout San Marcos at 8 a.m. on publication days with a distribution of 6,000. Printing and distribution is by the New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung. Copyright Wednesday, June 27, 2012. All copy, photographs and graphics appearing in The University Star are the exclusive property of The University Star and may not be reproduced without the expressed written consent of the editor in chief. The first five issues of each edition of the paper are free. Additional copies of the paper can be purchased at 50¢ per copy. Contact The University Star office at (512) 245-3487 to purchase additional copies.
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Opinions | The University Star | Wednesday June 27, 2012 | 5
E. coli in water a serious threat
LETTER TO THE EDITOR By Alex Pernice Opinions Columnist
hen bacteria like E. coli find their way into the campus water system, it is imperative that the university takes an active role in resolving the contamination issue. According to a June 13 University Star article, E. coli was found on the pretreatment side of a campus water well. The bacteria was disinfected before it had the possibility to affect students on the post-treatment side. Take a moment to think about how important water is to you. Water is everywhere in San Marcos, from the river at Sewell to the drinking fountains all around the Texas State campus. As a growing institution, Texas State has many checks and balances when it comes to safety and security. Taking care of its water sources is one of the most important things the university can do. Water is such a vital element to life in general. It not only provides entertainment with pools and the river in summertime, but it can also affect health. Health should be put first, especially when E. coli is involved. For many Bobcats, the threat of E. coli is frightening because the bacterium is notorious for wreaking havoc on the human body. E. coli contamination is caused by animal or human wastes that collect in runoff by rain or snow. The bacteria finds its way into places like Spring Lake and the Edwards Aquifer, which can lead to pollution of the water. Depending on the strain of the bacterium, ingesting water that contains E. coli can result in serious digestive problems. Students should be concerned with this not only because of the effect on drinking water, but also because of the river. Imagine getting terribly sick for days after a weekend float. I know I would be extremely frustrated if that happened to me. It is understandable that finding E. coli in our water sources could raise concerns within the Texas State community. Students and staff may begin to wonder if the administration is taking the proper precautions early and often when it comes to testing water treatment sites. Ingesting harmful bacteria of any kind is a frightening thing, but to know that Texas State has been credited for its successful contamination prevention in past years is a comforting fact. The university also responded well to the positive E. coli results by treating the problem in a timely manner. It is important for people to be educated when it comes to water contamination. Know what to do if your water is not safe. The city you obtain your water from is required to notify you when there is a situation such as bacterial pollution. Think of ways to further protect your own tap water. Purchasing a simple purifying pitcher or sink purifier will ensure even cleaner water. And, above all, be smart about where you actually get a drink. As refreshing as that river water may look during a long afternoon, in hindsight, it probably will not be so great to drink. So take care, fellow Bobcats, when filling your water bottles or diving into the river at Sewell this year. As the university administration continues to watch what goes in and out of the water sources, make sure to check as well. Being safe will always trump being sorry in the long run.
As The University Star readers likely know, Texas State will end its quartercentury relationship with the Southland Conference in the coming weeks. At the same time, Texas State will assume full membership in the Western Athletic Conference. It is no secret that Texas State athletics has been a large part of the successful history of the Southland Conference since the university joined the league in 1987. At the same time, the Southland has reciprocated by providing the institution with many of the finest athletic moments in school history. On behalf of the Southland Conference and its membership, we would like to thank everyone who has ever been involved with Texas State athletics during its league tenure. That begins at the top with the previous leadership of university presidents Robert Hardesty and Jerome Supple. Now, it continues under the dynamic management of President Denise Trauth. There can be little athletic success without the proper direction and support of effective presidential control. There are many, many others to salute and thank for their contributions to the Southland Conference, and we offer our sincere appreciation. Legends, great friends, administrators, coaches and outstanding student athletes over 25 years are too numerous to mention. However, the Southland greatly appreciates all those at Texas State whose hard work, loyalty and love of this league have helped build a mutually beneficial relationship over time. We, again, thank Texas State athletics for the great memories and all the dramatic moments at Bobcat Stadium, Strahan Coliseum, Bobcat Ballpark and Bobcat Softball Stadium. We are very proud that the Southland has allowed Texas State athletics to be competitively successful for 25 years and we know the program will enjoy unlimited success in the Western Athletic Conference. —Tom Burnett is the Commissioner of the Southland Conference
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Rapid pace, class interactions make summer classes beneficial By Ariella Hannon Opinions Columnist
rades in summer sessions are higher because the classes are small, productive and consistently on students’ minds. According to an April 24 University Star article, 34.2 percent of students received A’s in the fall. In the spring, 34.5 percent of students made A’s, and 42.9 percent received the same letter grade for summer session I. In summer session II, the student grade percentage of A’s was 39.6. Summer grades are not higher because the classes are easier. The grades are higher because the classes are more efficient and more personable.
The summer sessions are typically half as full as the fall or spring semesters. The smaller class sizes allow for a more personable atmosphere between other students and teachers. Having smaller groups of students in every class makes it easier for students to focus and learn. The teachers have a better understanding of their students’ needs because they interact with them on a daily basis. This interaction provides students with more incentive to learn and do well, producing better grades. The overall productivity of the summer sessions also contributes to higher grades. While some students find it difficult to work at such a rapid pace, others find the pace helpful. This is because most of the classes are on a
daily basis, and the material is easier to learn. There is generally more outside work that has to be done for a class, but this also contributes to a better learning of the material. The teachers are dedicated to providing students with the appropriate amount of material in a short amount of time. The students participating in summer classes are generally more dedicated to their coursework because summer classes are more of an option for students, unlike regular classes in the fall or spring. Since the classes are every day, it is easier for students to remember to study or do their homework. There are no days or classes in-between for students to forget to keep up with their studies. Attending class every day may be
a hassle, but missing a lecture is more of a challenge because a large chunk of material is covered in a single day. Attending class and taking good notes are essential to succeeding in summer classes. Summer courses are a wise choice for students who want to work toward completing their degrees outside of the traditional school year. According to the same article, summer grades are proven to be higher than the grades in both the fall and spring semesters. The overall environment of summer courses is what contributes to higher grade point averages. Summer classes provide students with a wonderful opportunity to choose how fast or how slow they want to finish their degrees.
The University Star has Schlitterbahn tickets! Read the paper and come to the Trinity Building between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. for a quiz over the last issue’s news. Answer the questions correctly to receive free Schlitterbahn passes for you and your friends.
6 | Wednesday June 27, 2012 | The University Star
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The Square to welcome new “old-time” bar, Black Rabbit Saloon By Aisling Niestroy Trends Reporter In a few short weeks, The Square will welcome Black Rabbit Saloon — the first saloon-style bar to make an appearance in years. Black Rabbit Saloon will be in the spot that used to house Dillinger’s, which is now closed. The new bar draws on some old themes, as the building itself was built in the 1880s. The current owners, James Frailicks, Brian Scofield and James Wilson used that to their advantage when creating their ‘old-timey’ San Marcos bar. “We basically gutted the building and started over. We took it all down to the original concrete and walls,” Wilson said. “We kept the old effects of the building and tried to stay true to its roots. You can really see how old it is.” In addition to keeping the building’s natural stone surfaces for an old-time look, the actual bar was designed using old whiskey and wine barrels. The owners also have a large carving of a rabbit that they plan on painting black and placing near the front entrance.
Black Rabbit Saloon will have a daytime happy hour around 3 p.m. in order to attract more than just the college crowd. The bar will be open daily and will feature mainly draft beer specials. “We’re hoping for a balance between young and old,” Wilson said. “It’ll be a good atmosphere where you can have a good time or relax.” Black Rabbit Saloon will feature several different types of “big kid games,” including pool tables and darts, keeping true to The Square’s tradition of providing entertainment for its patrons. The bar will also have more unique games such as skee-ball and shuffleboard tables, for which they plan on creating leagues. Scofield is the current owner of Barfish, where Wilson is general manager, and One41, where Frailicks is general manager. They hope to keep the same service-oriented attitudes at Black Rabbit Saloon that their other bars have, but want people to notice the difference from Dillinger’s and other bars. “We hope that people’s first impression of the saloon will be, ‘Wow,’” Wilson said.
Sonja Burton, Staff Photographer
Left: Black Rabbit Saloon is located on Hopkins Street and will open in July. Top: James Wilson, one of the owners of Black Rabbit Saloon, holds a drink at his other bar, Barfish.
Trends | The University Star | Wednesday June 27, 2012 | 7
Forsaken flip-flops live on as sculpture Sara Beth Worcester, Staff Photographer
Robert Schmid, manager of A. E. Wood Fish Hatchery, creates art from objects he finds on the banks of the San Marcos River. By Xander Peters Features Reporter A San Marcos local is demonstrating how one man’s trash can become another man’s treasure. Robert Schmid, a local artist and manager of A.E. Wood Fish Hatchery, has been searching for artistic inspiration where others might overlook it. While kayaking, Schmid scans the San Marcos River and its banks for flip-flops, driftwood, glass and other miscellaneous pieces that may fit what he calls “found objects” art. The part-time artist has collected more than 2,000 shreds of lost footwear over the last few years of his recover-and-create pastime. In 2010, Schmid featured his installation, The Forest of Lost Soles, in the San Marcos nature center. He has also stockpiled enough driftwood to finish his latest piece, named the Four Gar of Texas. “I wanted to find a way to tell people that flip-flops aren’t the best footwear for the river,” he said. “I had hoped to promote my work as more than just a novelty by using what someone had tossed aside in the water.” Schmid attributed the initial spark that led him to a passion of artistic expression to his wife. She had encouraged him to take up woodcarving classes about 20 years ago. Since then, he has started doing watercolors and constructing abstract pieces such as the flip-flop installation. “I’ve been exposed to art and the spontaneity of the process for a while now and I’ve learned that it takes a lot more than a pretty picture,” Schmid said. “You have to use a certain part of your imagination and
soul to drive art, to be art.” The artist went on to mention how a significant amount of the originality in his work derives from Julia Cameron’s book, The Artist Way. He said the novel instilled in him how the idea of worldly inspiration creates a sense of possibility in almost every walk of life. “I like to take my grandkids on walks down by the river, and when we do, everything I notice around us, an old bicycle, a crooked stick, broken glass, I see as something that could be used for art,” Schmid said. In the future, Schmid would like to find somewhere he can display his work where it would be appreciated. Until then, the casual shoe collector said he plans to continue doing his part to keep the river clean while studying works by famous Texas artists and developing more opinions of his own. “One thing that bugs me about art is how if you’re going to make something so damn abstract, like a painted-black wooden board, then you have to explain it,” he said. “Especially if you’re going to price it for $10,000, because your ‘average Joe’ trying to make a living isn’t going to appreciate that due to the price. So, tell people about your work and why you did it. Maybe someone out there will appreciate your experience with the piece as much as you did.”
Theater program teaches alumna acting skills, leads her to success By Paige Lambert Trends Reporter Terissa Kelton spends her days around cameras, costume artists and creative geniuses. Kelton, Texas State alumna, is developing the next set of projects for Twitchy Dolphin Flix, an independent film company in Austin. Her involvement in the theater program at Texas State led her to Twitchy Dolphin. “Through the classes developing stage acting, I found myself to be a more subtle actor,” said Kelton, 2010 graduate with a BA in acting and mass communication. “I talked to Laura Lane, a faculty member, and started looking for other projects.” In spring of 2009, Kelton found a casting call for “Look At Me Again,” a film being produced by the company. Even though she only went in as an extra, Kelton was asked to audition for another film. She has been involved in every film since. “Terissa has lots of moxie and pluck. After she came on board as an extra, I knew she had a future here,” said James Christopher, president of Twitchy Dolphin. “She has that certain work ethic this business takes, and how to be subtle with emotions where it was needed.” Christopher said that subtlety is important in film. Since the audience is only a few feet from the screen, actors must not go over the top with emotion. After acting in “Turkey Day” and “Snatch ‘n’ Grab,” Kelton tried her hand at producing.
“The owner had pre-cast for “Goin’ Guerrilla,” but he asked me if I wanted to produce,” Kelton said. “I helped with publications, worked with script writers, and really enjoyed the whole process. I eventually got an acting spot, so it was an interesting dynamic being actor and producer.” Kelton went on to produce “3 References,” her sole position for the film. She said she was more excited about this film, which just recently wrapped, because she could focus on producing a great movie. Double majoring at Texas State helped Kelton produce and work in the film business. “It’s cool because I know how to highlight my acting, approach the camera and how to write press releases on the other side of things,” Kelton said. “It really helped me learn how to keep connections and not burn bridges, which can be a tremendous downfall in a small world like the indie film industry.” Kelton has worked on six films with Twitchy Dolphin over the past three years. The company has won awards at major film festivals around the country. She credits her success to Texas State, which helped her prepare for this unique business. “The professors really helped me understand to always be going on to the next thing,” Kelton said. “To move on if you don’t get a role and try to expand your skills.” Kelton’s training, passion and work ethic created a unique style of acting that fits into the Twitchy Dolphin scene. As Christopher said, “it takes a special someone to be twitchy.”
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Bobcats News and Notes Movin’ on up
Texas State’s head baseball coach
Kathryn Parker, Staff Photographer
Coach Ty Harrington is the winningest coach in Texas State baseball history. By Jordan Cole Sports Reporter Coach Ty Harrington boasts a 448-321 all-time record, including a 244-135 record during Southland Conference play, after his 13th season at Texas State. He has coached 65 all-conference selections and propelled 33 players into the Major League Baseball draft, including five more this year. He is the winningest coach in Texas State baseball history and looks to continue his winning ways moving into the off-season. JC: So this season had many ups and downs, droughts and streaks, encouraging wins and disappointing losses. Which win would you say was the most impressive to you this season and why? TH: I think probably the two games against Oregon after we had just come off of being swept by Sam Houston. I thought it showed a lot of character on our behalf to come back like that against a team that is now playing in the super regionals and bidding for the College World Series. JC: Which loss was most disappointing and why? TH: The last one, because it ended the season and ended the opportunity for a team to move forward. JC: Next season is going to be somewhat of a rebirth, as the team is losing many of the leaders that helped build the program and make it what it is today. How do you go about replacing those pieces? TH: The young guys that were on the team this year got a lot of experience and will step into those leadership roles. We do have some guys returning that are older and very capable too—the Andrew Stumphs and the Morgan Mickans. There is a group of guys that are all very capable and they just need to step up and realize that it’s their time.
All five Texas State baseball players that were drafted have begun their careers in the minor leagues. Jeff McVaney has the fourth highest batting average, .296, on the Connecticut Tigers. Casey Kalenkosky has a .294 batting average through five games with Danville Braves, Colton Turner has a 4.26 ERA in two starts with Vancouver Canadians, Lewis Head has started two games with Mahoning Valley Scraperes posting a 1.50 ERA and Travis Ballew earned a win with the Tri-City ValleyCats.
Texas Tech game on JC: Who would you say has to have a phenomenal season and step up most for the team in order to ensure the team’s continued success? TH: I think it’s more a group of them than a specific individual. I think we need to have a group of guys step in and do some great things.
Texas State’s matchup with Texas Tech, their FBS home opener, was almost canceled this past week after Texas Tech said it was considering not playing the game if it aired on the Longhorn Network. Instead, the match up will air on ESPN3.com
Coming up short
Logan Cunningham competed at Olympic Trials Monday but failed to qualify for the Olympics. Cunningham was just one of 24 participating, but did receive a USTFCCCA Honorable Mention all-America award at the NCAA Championships in Des Moines, Iowa.
All 16 athletic programs at Texas State were above the NCAA required 925 mark on the Academic Progress Rate, with five different programs increasing their scores from last year. Softball and women’s tennis posted perfect scores of 1,000.
Report compiled by Cameron Irvine, Sports Editor Twitter: @txstcamirvine
JC: You’ve alluded to the strong recruiting prowess of Coach (Derek) Matlock. What kind of players are you, Coach Matlock and the rest of your recruitment team looking to bring in to the program? TH: We’re certainly looking for guys like we have brought in the last couple of years. Guys that are student athletes and good people and also have the room to be developed. If you look again, two years in a row we have had five guys in each of the last two seasons drafted out of this program. I think it is important to recognize that we are trying to develop our players. Too many guys that are inspired are guys that have talent but are unwilling to be developed. JC: Do you think the move to a different conference is going to impact the team at all, whether it is for the good or the bad? TH: I think if anything it will be a positive. We’re going to get the opportunity to play the west coast one year and the east coast the year after that. I think it will be exciting to play in both conferences. JC: What do you think about all of the conference realignments? TH: That’s what administrators do. I coach baseball and try to win games for the university and give my team the best chance possible. And that’s what I do. Twitter: @TxStatesman
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