VOLUME 102, ISSUE 6
Defending the First Amendment since 1911
WEDNESDAY GO NE ONLI NOW
SEPTEMBER 5, 2012
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City council discusses budget
Enrollment drops in College of Education
By Karen Zamora News Reporter The San Marcos City Council held a public hearing Tuesday night regarding the budget for the 2013 fiscal year. The approximately $160.7 million proposed budget is larger than the budget from fiscal year 2012 because of property tax increases. The city budget for fiscal year 2012 was approximately $146 million. Finance Director Steve Parker said he started assessing the proposed budget in January of this year. He said this particular budget has been the most reviewed one since his term as director. Parker said the city has “trended very well” in terms of its budget, primarily due to the increase in property values and sales taxes. He said there are some instances where the city did spend money from the reserves. Parker said for every dollar the city spends, he wants to have 25 cents in the bank. The 2012-2013 fiscal year budget is made up of separate entities, including the $46.9 million general fund, the $30.5 million water and utility fund and the $55.5 million electric fund. Parker said $100,000 was also added to the budget to make San Marcos “more beautiful than it already is.” Lisa Spencer, Scheib Center board president, spoke during the public hearing and asked the council to help fund the center. The Scheib Mental Health Center, located on Bishop Street, is a mental health facility. Spencer said residents have made generous donations to the center, but it still needs help from the city. Mayor Daniel Guerrero and Councilman Wayne Becak, Place 4, both agreed they would not like the Scheib Center funding to come from money set aside for street construction and maintenance. The council ultimately decided to use $50,000 of the proposed budget from different entities to fund the Scheib Center. Parker said he recommends increasing park maintenance staff to help with keeping city parks clean. The budget also has room for additional police officers and a librarian assistant. During the public hearing, Diann McCabe, honors college senior lecturer and San Marcos Arts Commission member, asked city council to change the current budget’s funding for the arts. The second of two public hearings regarding a proposed tax increase was also held during Tuesday’s meeting. Parker said San Marcos property values increased by 4.8 percent, totaling $130.6 million. He said 60 percent of the increase was from new property and the other 40 percent was from existing properties. The staff presentation showed no increase from last year’s to this year’s tax rate. The first reading of the tax rate ordinance will take place Sept. 14 during the council’s packet meeting. The final reading will be Sept. 18.
Five-year enrollment figures 2008
Fall Enrollment 4,943
Source: Institutional Research Factbook
By Emma Long News Reporter Enrollment in the university’s College of Education, which certifies the most teachers in the state, has dropped this year amidst reports of widespread job cuts and low wages. There was an approximately five percent drop in enrollment in Texas State’s College of Education from spring 2011 to spring 2012. In addition to the drop, fall enrollment has also slowed. The college has typically grown by hundreds of students from fall to fall, but enrollment increased by only 13 students from fall 2011 to fall 2012. Officials from the college say there are a few factors that could be causing the enrollment decrease. Dean Stan Carpenter said the college has recently raised its GPA requirement from the state minimum of 2.5 to 2.75, which could have disquali-
Students now have more opportunities to vote early By Taylor Tompkins Assistant News Editor Hays County Commissioners voted to add additional early voting days to the Texas State campus during their meeting Tuesday. Oct. 22 and 23 will now be early voting days in addition to Oct. 24 and 25, which were already designated as such. Polling will be from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. in the LBJ Student Center. Joyce Cowan, Hays County Elections Administrator, said she spoke with Joanne Smith, vice president for student affairs, about the addition of more early voting days at Texas State’s polling locations. Cowan said Smith and the university were willing to work with the county on whatever decision they made. Will Conley, commissioner for Precinct 3, spoke about a prior proposal. The proposal suggested adding only one additional day to campus early voting, but allowing for three more extra hours of voting time. The hours that were made available for early voting on campus were determined by student activity, Cowan said. Class times and organization meetings were taken into account when deciding the availability of the polls for students. “We looked at the activity and tried to accommodate the majority of the voters,” Cowan said. “I know there are students who get up and are ready to go at 7 a.m., but we haven’t seen much activity in the past in early mornings.”
Spring Enrollment 4,740
Hays County early voters account for a large percentage of voters in the San Marcos, Kyle, Buda and Dripping Springs areas, Cowan said. “We will accommodate any voters who come into our locations,” Cowan said. “I think the biggest portion of our voters is going to vote early. I think the opportunity is there for people that may not have voted in the past to definitely vote this time.” Conley said there are more opportunities for early voting in San Marcos now than there were during the 2008 elections. On-campus polling was more present in 2008 than ever before, he said. “What’s most important to me is that we have (polling) time available to be as equivalent as possible to (early voting in) 2008 on campus,” Conley said. Cowan told county commissioners every day of additional voting will cost the county $500 in order to pay poll workers. County Judge Bert Cobb stressed the need for a final decision, saying the polling locations and the additional days needed to be approved by the state and federal government. “When you start changing things at this late a date, there could be a problem,” Cobb said. Cobb and Precinct 3 Commissioner Mark Jones voted against the motion. General election polling sites will be open Nov. 6 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Students can also vote by mail-in ballot after submitting the mail-in application found on the county’s website.
fied some students from being admitted. Carpenter said the media attention given to education budget cuts in the recent legislative session may have also discouraged students from seeking an education degree. Carpenter said this was seen in April 2011 when the Austin Independent School District laid off approximately 800 teachers. He said the district hired back about 650 of those teachers this August, but students were only hearing reports of the job cuts, not those of teachers being rehired. Patrice Werner, chair of the department of curriculum and instruction, said this is the first year a drop in enrollment in the college has been noticeable. Werner said students want to major in a field where they know a job will be found upon graduation, so the recent media attention given to education job cuts may have discouraged
students. However, the drop in enrollment is not entirely a bad thing, Werner said. “We feel like we had grown a little bit too much, so now (enrollment) is leveling off to a point that is more sustainable for us,” Werner said. “So it is not necessarily a terrible thing for us.” Carpenter said about 40 percent of educators are more than 55 years old. Those teachers would typically retire in the next 10 years, but they are tending to hold on to their jobs longer, taking away more positions for aspiring educators, he said. Carpenter said he understands why some students may not want to major or seek a career in education. “Our students are rational creatures,” Carpenter said. “There are going to be fewer jobs and they pay less. That’s not a great combination, so I really think there was some dam-
READ EDUCATION, PAGE 2
Water pipeline project construction continues
Erin Dyer, Staff Photographer
Construction on North LBJ street is expected to cause further congestion due to projects on Comanche and Sessom streets. By Colin Ashby Special to the Star San Marcos residents could continue to see the effects of construction on the Comanche 24-inch water transmission project until April 2013. The project is part of the City of San Marcos’ 2004 Water Master Plan in an attempt to better distribute water around the city. The project, headed by Santa Clara Construction Ltd. of Austin, received about $2.6 million in funding from the City of San Marcos through
water taxes. Approximately 6,561 feet of 24-inch main pipeline will be laid during construction. The motivation behind the project was to reduce pressure on the current 12-inch water pumps used by the city. Shaun Condor, head project engineer, said the existing pumps are too overworked. Linda Huff, director of engineering for the city, said the project could benefit citizens and the city. It will save
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age done.” In effort to increase enrollment, Werner said the college is advising students to pick certifications in areas that are desperately needed, such as special education, bilingual education and the math and science fields. Some students, in spite of reports of job cuts, are still actively pursuing a career in education. Earnest Buckley, political science senior, finds the call
to educate more powerful than any fear about not finding a job. “If people are basing whether they are going to be a teacher or not on that then I think that’s a good thing,” Buckley said. “We’ve weeded out some of those teachers who are probably going to end up being complacent in the profession and aren’t going to teach this sort of lifelong efficacy — which is what we need in teachers.”
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money on water bills because the pressure of the pumps will not be as high, making water distribution more efficient. Once complete, the Spring Lake pump station will connect to the Comanche water tower, providing better water distribution to parts of San Marcos. Construction crews are storing project materials and equipment by the Comanche water tank near North Comanche Street and Sessom Drive. Measures have been put in place to ensure there is no runoff into the drainage system. Some roads have been re-routed for the construction process, but the city is trying to minimize disruption as much as possible. “It’s typical to have lane closures during construction to protect citizens and construction workers passing through a work zone,” Condor said. “Safety is our number one concern during construction.” Condor said he hopes the project’s construction on North LBJ Street will be completed soon since schools are now in session. Huff said some lanes on Chestnut Street
were closed to reduce congestion and ensure safety for pedestrians and drivers. The city is working to reduce any confusion citizens may have about the project. Multiple traffic signals have been put up at several stops to direct drivers and provide safe walkways for pedestrians. Despite lane closures and the storage of materials, Condor said he has heard mainly positive feedback from San Marcos citizens regarding the benefits the city will have after construction ends. Matthew Darst, administrative coordinator of engineering for the city, said he has heard positive feedback about the project as well. San Marcos resident Brenden Neely said he is supportive of the project. However, he hopes it is completed soon, citing the road changes and construction debris as issues. Residents could see the storage site cleared up and construction ended soon. The project was originally scheduled to be completed by summer 2013. However, Condor said the project is ahead of schedule and could finish as soon as April 2013.
FACES program helps students succeed By Monica Solis News Reporter A Texas State program aimed toward helping students who have been through the foster care system recently began its second year on campus. Foster Care Alumni Creating Educational Success (FACES) held its first professional development training for faculty and staff Aug. 31. FACES will host the training at least once a semester to provide a greater awareness of issues facing foster care students. The Texas Guaranteed Student Loan Corporation recently awarded FACES a $90,000 grant to expand the program. FACES assists foster care alumni by hosting social events and creating an oncampus support network. The program also provides mentoring and advising when sought by students. The program has a foster care advisory council students can approach for help with a variety of issues including adjusting to college life, success tips or graduation plans. The vice president for student affairs office has held mentoring services for foster care alumni for the past three to four years, said Christine Norton, associate professor for the school of social work. “Part of what we’re trying to do is destigmatize having been in foster care — that it shouldn’t be a source of shame for anyone,” Norton said. “Personally, I feel very inspired by our students who were in foster care. They’re really strong and resilient, and that’s how we approach them.” Toni Watt, associate professor of soci-
ology, said approximately 80 Texas State students have been identified as foster care alumni. Watt became involved with FACES after doing years of research on the transitions experienced by foster children. She studied graduation rates and realized it was not enough to simply do research alone. “Very often, when (students) get shuffled around and never find a stable family, at (age) 18 they are left with nothing,” Watt said. “The state has not done a great job. We feel we have these responsibilities as a community and as a society to try and help these youth transition.” Courtney Jones, a foster care alumna and FACES advocate working on her master’s in social work at Texas State, spoke at the training session. “I was in the foster care system from age eight to 18. You have your good days and your bad days,” Jones said. “I went through many foster care placements, some of them because of me, and some of them because of a broken system. That’s why I became a social worker.” Jones, who graduated from Texas A&MCommerce with a bachelor’s degree in social work, said completing college was difficult because she graduated high school with a seventh grade reading and writing level. Jones said that’s part of why she helps with FACES. “I busted my butt and worked probably 10 times harder than anybody to get my bachelor’s,” Jones said. “I can now say I have a degree and no one can take that away from me. I try to let students know all the time, ‘You are not defined by your past.’”
CRIME ON THIS BLOTTER
DAY IN HISTORY 1698 – Russia’s Peter the Great imposed a tax on beards. 1774 – The first Continental Congress assembled in Philadelphia. 1793 – The Reign of Terror began during the French Revolution as the National Convention instituted harsh measures to repress counterrevolutionary activities. 1836 – Sam Houston was elected president of the Republic of Texas. 1882 – The nation’s first Labor Day parade was held in New York City. 1905 – The Treaty of Portsmouth, ending the Russo-Japanese War, was signed in New Hampshire. 1914 – The First Battle of the Marne began during World War I. 1939 – The United States proclaimed its neutrality in World War II. 1957 – “On the Road” by Jack Kerouac, the defining novel of the Beat Generation, was published. 1975 – President Gerald R. Ford escaped an attempt on his life in Sacramento, Calif., by Lynette “Squeaky” Fromme, a follower of Charles Manson. 2005 – President George W. Bush nominated John Roberts to be chief justice.
Austin Beavers, Staff Photographer
-Courtesy of the New York Times
Adam Pellerin, English sophomore, lines up his putt Aug. 28 on the Texas State disc golf course.
Sept. 1, 11:59 p.m. Bexar Hall Failure to identify A student was cited for minor in possession of alcohol and arrested for failure to identify. The student was transported to Hays County Law Enforcement Center and is awaiting a court date. Sept. 1, 5:30 p.m. Bexar Hall Parking Garage Striking an unattended vehicle and failure to comply A student’s vehicle was damaged while legally parked. The case is under investigation. Sept. 1, 4:00 a.m. Wood Street Parking Garage Criminal mischief under $500 A student was arrested for criminal mischief and transported to Hays County Law Enforcement Center and is awaiting a court date. Sept. 1, 2:23 a.m. Coliseum Parking Lot Driving while intoxicated A non-student was arrested for driving while intoxicated. The non-student was transported to Hays County Law Enforcement Center and is awaiting a court date. Sept. 1, 1:35 a.m. Lindsey Street Minor in possession of alcohol A student was cited for minor in possession of alcohol. The case is under judicial review. Sept. 1, 12:34 a.m. Academy Street Public intoxication A student was cited and arrested for public intoxication. The student was transported to Hays County Law Enforcement Center and is awaiting a court date. -Courtesy of University Police Department
library beat Alkek textbook availability may be conditional A lot of misinformation about textbooks swirls around at the beginning of each semester at Texas State. Here are the facts about textbooks at the library and some advice for finding them. The Alkek Library does not buy all the textbooks. The library actually buys very few textbooks. The funding goes more toward research materials. The library may have your textbooks. There are some textbooks at the 3rd floor reserve desk and some in the library collection. Some professors have extra copies of their textbooks, and they may put these on reserve
so the whole class can use them. Check-out is usually for two hours only and the books have to be used in the library. At the beginning of the semester, lines at the Reserve Desk tend to be very long as students come to ask if their professor has a book on reserve. Of course, the reserve staff is happy to help, but what a lot of people don’t know is that students can look this information up from any computer on or off campus. Go to the library homepage (http://www. library.txstate.edu) and click the “reserve” tab on the main search box. Click “print re-
serve,” then choose either “Course” or “Instructor” from the drop-down menu. Enter the course number (for example: Eng 1320, Chem 1410) or your professor’s last name and hit “Go”. To search for textbooks in the library’s collection, click the “books & more” tab on the homepage and type in the title of the book. You may be able to find an older edition of the book that will work for your class. For visual learners, a tutorial is available on the library blog that will walk you through these steps for searching both reserves and the library collection for your textbooks.
Check the newsfeed in the middle of our homepage for a link to the tutorial, called “Finding Textbooks at the Alkek Library”. If you just need a basic text in your subject, such as introductory algebra or biology, we have a complete collection of high school textbooks that may do the trick. Ask at the Government Information Desk on the 4th floor. As always, if you get stuck or can’t find what you’re looking for, our staff is ready to help. -Courtesy of Kay Hetherly
The University Star | Wednesday September 5, 2012 | 3
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Student parking spaces should increase, not decrease
Lara Shine, Star Illustrator
arking spots have quickly become as precious and valuable commodities at Texas State as the San Marcos River and the Edwards Aquifer. One glance around campus reveals a hectic landscape of cars and traffic, with what appears to be a disproportional amount of parking spots for the total number of students. Student enrollment levels are at an all-time high this year, and faculty and staff numbers have remained relatively steady due to a hiring freeze, which has been in place since May 2010. The university recently made the decision to reallocate 96 all-zone parking spots into restricted, facultyonly parking near the campus tennis courts. The spaces were reassigned as a red lot due to the impact of construction projects in the area, which reduced the amount of faculty parking options. Currently, only a small number of replacement faculty and staff members are being hired at the
university. The university should have sought adequate student input before reassigning the all-zone spots into a restricted lot, with a zero percent increase in administration numbers. Students should have been made aware of a meeting regarding the topic to speak up and voice their opinions. The only logical ways to accommodate more than 34,000 students are to either construct new parking garages or to increase the number of existing parking lots. Overcoming parking and transportation issues are certainly no easy tasks for the university and administration. According to an April 12 University Star article, Joanne Smith, vice president for student affairs, said it will be difficult to build additional parking garages because parking permit fee funding has to be great enough to help cover the costs. According to the same article, the university budgeted approximately $3.1 million for debt service payments on existing garages such as Woods, Matthews, Speck and the Mill Street parking lots during the 2013 year alone. Higher education budgets are running thin across the state, so finding millions of dollars to build
Student health should be priority in building renovations
By Ariella Hannon Opinions Columnist
lthough the university spent millions renovating Bobcat Stadium and proposed a million-dollar renovation for Alkek Library, significant funding should still be devoted to renovating dorm rooms that may cause health issues for students. Historically, many edifices were constructed with asbestos prior to the 1980s. It is not uncommon for some campus buildings to have contained the fibrous material, which has been linked to serious health concerns like mesothelioma. According to an April 19, 2011 University Star article, the Office of Planning, Design and Construction followed stateregulated procedures to remove asbestos from Falls Hall before it was demolished. A new performing arts center will be located at the former site of the dorm rooms. Although the university followed safety procedures during the building deconstruction, that does not make up for the number of students who may have had health issues during their time at Falls Hall. According to a July 25 University Star article, asbestos was also found in Elliott Hall. In order to keep up with health regulations, campus-wide building testing for asbestos-containing materials began 10-15 years ago and has been consistently updated. According to the same article, Katie Eskridge, Texas State alumna, reported sickness while living in Elliott Hall. Later, she made the connection between her continuing sickness and her place of
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residence. According to an Aug. 21 University Star article, the university spent $33 million on the renovation of the football stadium. Nothing appeared to be wrong with the stadium, aside from it being a little small and not naturally pleasing to the eye. According to the same article, the university also spent $48 million on the North Campus Housing Complex, $83 million on the Performing Arts Center and $47.7 million on the Undergraduate Academic Center. The university has funding that it is choosing to spend elsewhere. The dorms that need to be renovated or even demolished are continuing to house students. Elliott Hall was built decades ago, and it is not an attractive building. I lived in Elliott Hall from fall 2010 to spring 2011. The dilapidated state of the building was disheartening as a freshman. Finding out two years later that the building was actually endangering my health is not really a surprise, but it makes me question the university’s priorities. According to the same July 25 University Star article, labor and employment attorney Louis Obdyke said annual inspections of the dorms are not required by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. The university does, in fact, follow all health codes. However, it seems that student health in the dorms should be first priority regardless of whether annual asbestos testing is required. The university can put funding toward fixing Elliott Hall, so it does not necessarily have to be demolished like Falls Hall. The older the buildings get, the more they should be checked and updated to maintain good health for all students. New buildings are a fantastic way to bring in students and maintain the good image of Texas State, but renovating dorm rooms and making them safe as well as aesthetically pleasing is also pertinent. The construction of new buildings is an excellent plan for the university, but it should never be more important than the health of students living in dormitories.
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new parking garages is likely not an option in the short run. The 96 all-zone spots near the tennis courts could have been very valuable for students this year, with the ever-increasing scarcity of parking spots. Parking permit fee rates have increased in amounts ranging from $10 to $45 for the 2012-2013 school year. Therefore, if students are paying more for their parking passes, there should be an adequate number of parking spots available near campus.
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 University-San Marcos Student Media, the School of Journalism and Mass Communication or Texas State University-San Marcos.
Campus clubs open door for career opportunities
By Evan Bolton Opinions Columnist
exas State prides itself on student involvement in campus clubs, especially with the university boasting nearly 300 registered organizations. Coming from someone who has tried very hard to stay involved throughout college, the benefits of doing so outweigh any imagined negatives. The fall semester has just started, and now is the perfect time to join one of the many clubs Texas State has to offer. Though sitting in a dungeon-like apartment and playing video games may sound stimulating to some, getting out and meeting new people is more rewarding in the long run. Texas State offers a variety of activities and lots of ways to get involved. Clubs may be a good opportunity for those looking to study and brush shoulders with like-minded students. There are a host of clubs on campus with a variety of themes, including academic, sports, specialty, recreational, religious, political and professional organizations, as well as fraternities and sororities. Not only is getting involved in campus organizations a good way to meet people and blow off steam, but it also looks great to employers. We all
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attend college to earn a degree. If you list that degree on a resume along with additional extracurricular affiliations, those aspects will likely be enough to pique an employer’s interest. The truth of the matter is that a degree, though incredibly important, is only part of getting that dream job. Employers love applicants who are able to complete strenuous degree programs while still being involved with organizations. Not only will getting involved with an organization look great on a resume, but it will make it possible to network with hundreds of people who may lead you to that future dream career and paycheck. If meeting new people is not your thing, but you get fired up when it comes to making a difference in the community, there are organizations for that. Some organizations like the Human-Environmental-Animal-Team Establishment are all about working together to bring positive change and awareness to the community. No matter what your interests are, there is bound to be at least one club for you on campus. Of course, if you cannot find an organization to pledge your time to, it’s possible to create a new one. Though creating your own organization may seem like a daunting task, establishing a new club is actually a simple process. Everyone is interested in something, and every club had to start somewhere. Not to mention that “president” looks great on a résumé by demonstrating to employers you are a responsible and effective leader. Texas State is known for having a large amount of student involvement with clubs and organizations. Students should use their time here wisely to do the best they can to buff up résumés while networking with thousands of people along the way.
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, September 5, 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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New assistant art professor debuts work on campus
By Paige Lambert Trends Reporter
Carlos Valdez, Assistant Photo Editor
Elizabeth Rodda, assistant professor in the School of Art and Design, showcases her exhibition, “Altered States” Aug. 30 in the Joann Cole Mitte Gallery 1.
The start of the semester has brought fresh faces and ideas to the School of Art and Design. Liz Rodda, a new assistant professor, is showcasing her unique point of view in her exhibition “Altered States”. Rodda’s artwork is currently on display in the University Gallery  of the Joann Cole Mitte Art Building. The gallery will be open to the public until Sept. 15. “Every time we hire a new faculty member, I do an exhibit on them,” gallery curator Mary Mikel Stump said. “To artists, their work is like their research, so it’s really important to me to show their art to faculty and the university community.” The gallery consists of five videos, four sculptures and seven paintings. Rodda’s exhibit is titled “Altered States.” Rodda says the title refers to different approaches to making art and other states of consciousness. “I really wanted to explore different ideas and belief systems,” Rodda said. “A lot of artists are in a monologue approach, but I want people to be in a specific dialogue. I’m more interested in questions the pieces ask than the actual answers.” Many of the pieces have juxtaposing ideas, conflicting with each other to bring about deeper thoughts. One of her pieces, called “Plan for Victory,” takes the shape of a 20-sided die made of black jade, like the ones in the game Dungeons and Dragons. In the game, the die is
used to determine what will happen. “The die is also the same size found in a Magic 8 Ball, but doesn’t have any writing on the sides,” Rodda said. “Even if you rolled it, then there wouldn’t be any info. So this piece is about luck, not really knowing about outcomes and the unknown in general.” Another piece of her work consists of of two videos. A music video of “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes,” by Johnny Contardo, plays in the center of the screen while another video features men creating smoke as they burn out on their motorcycles in the background. The combined videos are another example of Rodda’s juxtaposed ideas. Along with debuting her artwork, Rodda is developing a program with integrated and time-based media, a part of art that hasn’t been explored by the department. The program focuses on using video and audio while incorporating traditional media like sculpting and painting. “She started a program at OU like the one we want here, and ran it for years. We were also really impressed with her exhibit and teaching record,” said Assistant Professor Barry Stone. “We didn’t have any faculty with her breadth of experience so it was a great opportunity to fill that void.” Rodda said she will start with video classes in an art context and go on from that idea to explore other avenues of time based media. “This type of media is multidisciplinary. It can be used with photography, painting or performance art,” Rodda said. “It’s a pretty exciting area of specializing and art making. I can’t wait to see how it enhances this already great department.”
Multicultural Greek Council showcases membership, performance By Jordan Gass-Poore’ Trends Reporter Texas State Multicultural Greek Council members will have the opportunity to clap, stomp, twist and turn in the name of their chapters at the organization’s annual showcase 7 p.m. Friday at the LBJ Amphitheater. A highlight of the event for many, which started in 2003, is when some chapter members “stroll.” Strolling functions in a similar manner as line dancing by having members of each participating chapter line up one after another to perform a choreographed routine counter-clockwise. Diana Soria, Multicultural Greek Council president, said this line uniquely showcases each participating chapter’s members and is a way to draw the student body’s attention. “If you have an idea of what greek life is, think again,” Soria, family and consumer sciences senior, said. Strolling has been a long-standing tradition in some multicultural greek chapters nationwide. The dance can trace its roots to the ring shout, a religious ritual performed by enslaved Africans brought to America. In the 1980s, when many Latino-based fraternities and sororities were established nationwide, the dance became adopted by multicultural greek organizations as a way for chapters to best represent and express themselves. Some Texas State Multicultural Greek Council chapters incorporate strolling into their weeks-long recruitment process. Soria said the recruitment process for Multicultural Greek Council chapters, called “being underground,” can be as traditional and secretive as Texas State panhellenic and interfraternity council chapters. After her time being underground, she was finally shown the light. She said she be-
came a member of Sigma Delta Lambda sorority two years ago, after transferring from Sam Houston State University, because it provided her with the support system she needed as a first generation college student. “I fell into it. I came to school not knowing what a sorority was,” she said. “Well, I had an idea, but it was nothing that I wanted to be a part of.” After visiting the Texas State Multicultural Greek Council website, Soria said Sigma Delta Lambda’s history as the first Latinabased sorority on campus and mission drew her to the chapter. The first Sigma Delta Lambda chapter was founded at Texas State, formerly Southwest Texas State University, in 1996. “They wanted something to help them feel like they weren’t second class—I don’t know how else to word it,” Soria said. “They wanted to have their voice heard.” Sigma Delta Lambda has grown to include chapters at the University of Texas, Texas A&M International University, Texas Lutheran University, University of North Texas and Texas Woman’s University. In fall 1999, Sigma Delta Lambda joined together with Kappa Delta Chi, Sigma Lambda Beta and Sigma Lambda Gamma to establish the Multicultural Greek Council. Multicultural Greek Council is the umbrella organization of six predominantly Hispanic-based sororities and fraternities, with an approximate total membership of 140 students. The organization’s purpose is to meet the individual and joint needs of each chapter, to voice chapter concerns and to ensure chapters work cohesively. Jessica Garcia, Alpha Psi Lambda National southern regional director, said multicultural greek organizations promote a familia aspect that not many organizations can. She joined the small Texas State Chapter
Adriana Candelaria, Staff Photographer
Members of Sigma Lambda Beta and Kappa Delta Chi “stroll” outside LBJ Aug. 29 for future prospects to take a look at what each organization offers. of Alpha Psi Lambda in 2007 in an effort to gain confidence. More than one year after graduating from Texas State, Garcia returns with the help of other organization alumni to promote the on-campus reinstatement of the co-educational fraternity. “Having a co-ed membership also allows
us to prepare for the ‘real world’ as both men and women work together to achieve a common goal,” Garcia said. Garcia said the chapter was removed from campus because of academics. She said for the chapter to be reinstated it must have a minimum of six members, who will be the new founding line.
Professor Tom Berno Associate director of the school of art and design By Paige Lambert Trends Reporter As Texas State emerges as a research university and enters a new athletic conference, other departments are looking to expand and vamp up their programs. Tom Berno, associate director of the school of art and design, said his is doing just that. Tom Berno talked to The University Star about the new changes and programs. PL: So, what’s new for the art department? TB: The biggest news is the fact that the communication design program is starting to implement an enrollment management/portfolio review. We want to get our number of majors from 700 to 400. The amount of students in that major is stretching our resources, and not allowing us to get some different things going. This might seem daunting to some of our students, but it’ll help them in the long run. The large amount of communication design students we graduate is too much for the field. This way, students won’t be competing against each other for jobs after graduation. Plus we’ll see some really talented design students get into creative and innovative careers. PL: Any new types of exhibitions? TB: Our galleries are oriented to student exhibitions, mainly studio art and photography students. We’ve actually been getting more people from outside San Marcos for events like our gallery talks and we’re trying to grow that. There are definitely more significant things happening with our galleries than the past years.
PL: What should we be looking forward to seeing? TB: Again we’ve got some really interesting things going on. You may recall the Grafik Intervention project last year, where students projected text and graphics on old historic buildings and got the San Marcos community involved. We want to do more things like that—get the community involved. PL: What are you most excited for? TB: We’ve had a lot of new changes to our program and have looked into revamping the curriculum. One thing I’m excited about is the possibility of an art history major. We’ve never had (an) official bachelor’s of art history, just an emphasis. We have dynamic faculty that believe we have the resources to make this happen. I’m not sure if it’ll be presented this semester, but it will be very soon. PL: Are any new programs or courses being introduced this semester? TB: We always have faculty introducing new topics. Our newest course, a portfolio development class, is intended for seniors. They learn fundamental job search skills, how to build a good portfolio and work on projects. It’s great because we can look at their body of work and address their strengths and weaknesses. Because of the better enrollment management, we’ve been able to offer three sections for this class this semester. We’re continuing to put out the best program for our students. We’re really trying to see how the art department can fit into an emerging research institution. We want people to say that we have a great program, even on a national level.
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Practice Report Sept. 4: Bobcats put Cougars in rearview mirror By Jordan Brewer Assistant Sports Editor Texas State experienced its first FBS win in school history over Houston Saturday 30-13, although the celebration did not last long as the team looks forward to an even bigger test against Texas Tech this weekend. “I hope (the players started preparing) about 5:30 on Sunday when we got done with our team meeting,” Coach Dennis Franchione said. “We finished up our dialogue from the Houston game. Then we started our scouting report for the Texas Tech game.” Momentum and excitement is bubbling from last week’s monumental win over the Cougars. The much talkedabout Texas Tech game and the official unveiling of the expanded stadium end zone section have added intensity to the practice fields. “We had a good Tuesday (practice),” Franchione said. “Sunday was ok — nothing wrong with Sunday. Today was the first day the game plan (went) in. There’s a lot of mental work aside from the physical. I thought they were pretty purposeful.” Players and coaches agree last week’s game is in the rearview mirror and although they will use the slight momentum to their advantage, players like running back Marcus Curry do not want the Houston win to be their only positive for the year. “Coach Fran definitely did not take it easy on us today,” Curry said. “We practiced a full 21 periods. We were out there going hard today. We got to build on it. We can’t settle. We don’t want (the Houston win) to be the highlight of our season.” The Bobcat offense led by Curry and quarterback Shaun Rutherford used a balanced attack last week and in practice it looked no different. Not only were the play calls mixing up the run and the pass, but Rutherford and quarterback Tyler Arndt were completing short passes with consistency while using their running backs in a variety of ways. Defensive back Craig Mager was another player to step up when Texas State needed it the most last week with a key interception as his defense backed up in the opponent’s red zone. Mager hopes to continue his own success in the secondary against a savvy and talented Texas Tech offense. The defense has a little experience against an offense like the Red Raiders’.
Mager admits it is very similar to that of Houston’s, even though there are some subtle differences. Preparations for the Texas Tech offense have been smooth stemming from last week. “(Texas Tech) and Houston are pretty similar,” Mager said. “They run a lot of the same route combinations. We got a little bit of practice already because of last week. They have a lot of size though.” The Bobcats have no major injuries for the second week in a row. Coming into the season Franchione and his coaching staff were emphasizing the importance of staying healthy during their first WAC season. So far the off-season workouts and conditioning have been helping. Twitter: @jbrewer32
For a recap of women’s golf’s first place finish at the Chris Banister Golf Classic and Bobcat News and Notes from Wednesday Sept. 5, scan here or head to UniversityStar.com.
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The Bobcats are preparing for this weekend’s matchup against Texas Tech at Bobcat Stadium.
Bears too much for Bobcats
By Jordan Cole Sports Reporter
Consistency was a major focal point for the volleyball team going into their game against Baylor on Tuesday, but unfortunately they were unable to harness a full set’s worth of it. The team showed they could compete early, but gave up two big leads late in the first two sets and lost the match in straight sets, 25-22, 26-24, 25-13. Coach Karen Chisum said there really was no excuse, and the team will face the kind of height and talent displayed by Baylor all season long in Division I play. “We’re going to see that size all year long,” Chisum said. “I don’t want to use that excuse because that’s what Division I volleyball is going to be about. That’s what the WAC is going to be about. We’ve got to be able to compete with those people.” Baylor is in no way a slouch of a Division I team and is now 6-1 on the season. Coming into this season they were picked to finish 5th in the Big 12, which is tied for their second highest pre-season ranking. Youth and inexperience have been another talking point about the team early this season, but Chisum said that should not and cannot be a crutch to lean on much longer. “I don’t want to use the term ‘we’re young all season long,’” Chisum said. “That’s not an excuse. We’ve got to move on and we’ve got to get better every night.” The first set showed promise for the Bobcats going down to the wire. Texas State trailed early, 8-4, but rebounded after a timeout to take their first lead at 1513. It remained competitive until the final volley went back and forth multiple times between the two. It ended in Baylor’s favor, however, to earn a 1-0 set lead. The second set started much like the first with Texas State down early 9-5. They managed to rebound, yet again, with another run to even the score 9-9. The Bobcats took the lead 14-11 to force Baylor to call a timeout and continued with the mo-
mentum after the break, scoring another three straight points to force Baylor into another timeout, down 17-11. Baylor roared back after the timeout, however, with a run much similar to the first set that tied the game at 22-22, an 11-5 surge. The comeback was a major turning point in the match as it took away any Bobcat momentum left and allowed the Bears to run to a 24-22 lead. The Bobcats tried to scratch their way back in and brought the game to a tie at 24. However, their second blown lead in as many sets was just too much to overcome. The Bobcats dropped the second set 24-26 and surrendered 15 of the final 22 points in the match. Looking to shake off two squandered leads in two set losses, the Bobcats came out in the third set with the same story, down early 11-5. The match continued on with Baylor’s pressure as they brought the score to 20-11. Texas State could do little to weather the storm from then on, falling 25-14. Overall, the Bobcats were outscored 4021 in the final moments of a disappointing match for Texas State. “It was up and down all night,” Chisum said. “We can compete with these guys. We had a 7- or 8-point lead in game two and we let it get away. I was disappointed particularly in game two and then in game three. It was like, ‘Let’s just go out there and get this over with.’ You’ve got to compete. We didn’t compete at all in the third set.” Chisum said the team must learn from their mistakes and ready themselves for another big game versus Auburn Friday at the SMU Invitational. “They’ve got to be hungry for another win,” Chisum said. “They’ve got to be hungry to play again. It’s not like football where you have a whole week to prepare. In volleyball you’re going to play, then you’re going to play again in two or three days. You’ve got to forget it and move on.” Twitter: @TXStatesman
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