UNIVERSITY PRESS 6
| fauâ€™s student newspaper
october 5, 2010
Vol. 12 Issue 7
Does one election mistake cancel out another? -8-
New facility brings the Davie campus closer to the Everglades -3First issue is free; each additional copy is 50 cents and available in the UP newsroom.
www.upressonline.com • University Press • October 5, 2010 • 2
Building scientists university press www.upressonline.com
Research hub injects life into Davie campus
October 5, 2010
Managing Editor Gideon Grudo WEB editor Tyler Krome
SPORTS EDITOR Franco Panizo Business Manager Chris Persaud Entertainment Editor Briana Bramm Listings Editor Diana Burgos PHOTO Editor Liz Dzuro art director Mariam Aldhahi OWL NEWS TV Editor Karen “Kat” Herisse senior Reporters Brandon Ballenger Monica Ruiz STAFF REPORTERS Alyssa Cutter Mark Gibson COPY EDITOR Rachel Chapnick ADVISERS Marti Harvey Michael Koretzky 777 Glades Road Student Union, Room 214 Boca Raton, FL 33431 PHONE: (561) 297-2960 ONLINE: www.upressonline.com Want to join our team? E-mail: email@example.com Staff Meetings: Every Friday at 2 p.m. in the Student Union, Room 214 WANT TO PLACE AN AD? Contact Marc Litt at (732) 991-6353 or firstname.lastname@example.org PUBLISHER: FAU Student Government The opinions expressed by the UP are not necessarily those of the student body, Student Government or the university. Cover photo ILLUSTRATION by ADAM SHEETZ
Several times a week for six months, graduate biology student Bryan Botson wakes up before dawn to get picked up by a Jet Ranger helicopter. He is then flown to the middle of the Everglades to study small fish that birds feed on — while trying not to fall prey himself to an alligator in the murky, waist-deep waters. Botson’s and other researchers’ efforts to assess the wetlands’ current state will get a major boost as a new FAU/UF joint-use facility hosts its ribbon-cutting ceremony on Nov. 10, providing a new state-of-the art hub for Everglades research. “The ability to conduct more research lets professors get grants more effectively. That makes the university more attractive to outside students, and so it’s a positive feedback loop,” said Dale Gawlik, director of the environmental science program, who’s also one of the key scientists involved in the marshlands’ projects. He believes that with the new top-of-theline labs, the recent hiring of faculty for the new facility, and the partnership with UF, the environmental program is destined to boom. “We are going to have a lot of students and lots of faculty involved.” Located next to the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences building, right across the street from the other FAU buildings on the Davie campus, it will also allow for the storage of airboats and on-the-field research equipment. Gary Perry, dean of the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science, has ambitious plans for the growing campus. He wants to mold it into a science-oriented giant. “As we go forward, really the goal is to try and specify the program on the [Davie] campus, make that campus mission-specific with respect to science and biology,” Perry said. FAU, UF scientists, and the U.S Geological Survey, a government agency that studies the country’s landscape, will work together for a common cause: the restoration of the Everglades after 40 years of man-caused destruction. According to Gawlik, the overall restoration is a set of projects meant to address four major ecological problems: the introduction of foreign species to the region; water pollution from agricultural fertilizer runoff; loss
of wetlands from housing developments; and hydrologic changes — changes in the
District, a regional governmental agency that oversees water resources in the southeast Photos courtesy of Gawlik Lab
Copy DESK CHIEF Ricky Michalski
SERGIO N. CANDIDO CONTRIBUTOR
Bryan Botson measures vegetation and water depth in the Everglades.
amount and distribution of water in the Everglades. He is working with students like Bryan Botson to try to find connections in how changes in the water affect the Everglades’ wildlife. Botson, 32, who serves as research coordinator for Gawlik’s lab, is currently studying the relationship between wading birds, such as cranes, herons or storks, and their prey (small fish) during the dry season when the water is low. “[My favorite part] is a combination of being in the field and collecting the data, and then when you really start putting it together, making some connections,” Botson said. “This research is very exciting.” He said that these types of birds serve as “indicators” for the environment. If they are nesting and breeding, it means the environment is healthy. If the bird population decreases, it means there’s something wrong with the area. The South Florida Water Management
part of the state, is funding Botson’s helicopter and many of the Everglades’ projects. SFWMD uses this type of research to know where they can channel fresh water from while causing the least amount of harm to the wetlands. The FAU/UF joint-use facility will also house part of the geosciences department to develop maps and graphics to observe how different species move around in the Everglades. Both undergraduate and graduate biology courses will be offered on its first floor, where one classroom can sit up to 100 students. Gary Perry said that some nursing and psychology classes may also be offered. Office space for faculty in the College of Arts and Letters and other departments will be provided on the top floors. “[This building] is expanding the campus,” Perry said. “And it’s really growing our entire presence there in Davie.”
Continued on Page 4 >>
3 • October 5, 2010 • University Press • www.upressonline.com
Editor-in-chief Karla Bowsher
So, whose building is it anyway?
<<CONTINUED FROM PAGE 3
The building’s green features The 75,000-square-foot facility was designed to meet the standards of the U.S. Green Building Council, a non-profit organization dedicated to sustainable building design and construction. The new facility was awarded the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) silver certification.
- Bicycle racks, changing rooms and showers will encourage researchers to use alternative transportation methods to reduce pollution. -The landscape will comprise local plants that require little irrigation, reducing water consumption by 20 percent. - The building will have an air-conditioning system that reduces energy consumption by 14 percent. - Twenty percent of the construction material comes from recycled items. will utilize natural lighting to reduce energy consumption. [Source: www.fau.edu]
Former Gawlik Lab member Garth Herring weighs a wading bird after catching it with a net-shooting gun.
www.upressonline.com • University Press • October 5, 2010 • 4
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Gary W. Perry, dean of the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science, said that several years ago, FAU was already planning to expand its Davie campus — the problem was that it didn’t have any land. A Jan. 23, 2009, press release from FAU said that the 25 acres of land where the new facility sits were “transferred” to FAU from the University of Florida. But two days later, the Sun-Sentinel wrote that UF “donated” the land to FAU. Phyllis Bebko, associate vice president of Broward campuses, said that the land was a part of the acreage given to the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences to use for scientific work many years ago. The story dates back to post-World War II Davie, when the 545 acres that were previously used as an air naval training base were designated by the state for educational purposes. Broward College, Nova Southeastern University and UF got the big pieces of the cake in the ‘60s, with FAU coming last in 1994. The complex of schools became known as the South Florida Education Center (SFEC), according to SFEC’s website. “The legislature more recently identified a portion of the UF land and assigned it to FAU because of our growth,” Bebko said via e-mail. Bebko said that a part of the agreement called for UF to have some space in the first building to be built on their former land. “It is an FAU building,” Bebko said. “But the second floor is to be occupied by UF scientists, many of whom are colleagues of the FAU scientists who will be in the building.”
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The UP investigates the spiders seen at FAU to find out what they are and where they’re from
When students returned to campus this semester, they found that they were not alone. Instead, they were sharing the campus with some unusual classmates: spiders. And not cute, friendly-looking, “itsy-bitsy”-type spiders. Spindly-legged, menacing, furry spiders. Spiders nearly the size of your face. They’re seen on the sides of the Breezeway and hanging from the trees. Where did they come from? What are they doing here? Do they come in peace? They’re called golden silk orb-weavers, and to find out whether they have hostile intentions, the UP contacted spider expert G.B. Edwards, who’s been studying these creepy-crawlies for more than thirty years. Dr. Edwards got his Ph.D in entomology at UF and now works for the Florida Department of Agriculture. The news he told the UP is mostly good. These spiders aren’t dangerous, and you’ll probably never wake up to find one on your pillow. And if you really don’t like them, don’t worry — they’ll be gone come winter.
So, what are they? They’re officially called golden silk orb-weavers, although you might also hear them called golden silk spiders or golden orb weavers because of their webs. Seen in direct sunlight, their silk is a pale gold color. They’re also sometimes called banana spiders, but people use that name to refer to a wide variety of spiders that end up in Florida by hitching a ride in cargo ships hidden in bunches of bananas.
Where do they live? Am I going to find this thing in my dorm room someday? These spiders like hot and humid places. This specific species lives all around the Gulf of Mexico, down in Central and South America and around the Caribbean. As to whether you’re likely to share a room with one any time soon, Edwards said, “No, you’ll never find one inside — probably.” They build webs that can be nearly four feet across, so they prefer open spaces, like trails or on the edge of the woods.
How big do they get? How long do they live?
PHOTO BY GABRIEL J .CONTRERAS A large female golden silk spider, avoiding the rain from a tropical storm, hangs from the trees that overhang the smoking area near the north end of the Boca campus Breezeway on Sept. 29.
Are they venomous? They are technically venomous, but since their venom is specialized for killing their prey — other invertebrates — it’s not particularly dangerous to humans. So, a bite from one of these spiders isn’t going to land you in the hospital. People who’ve been bitten say it hurts about as bad as a bee sting (although a few have reported that the area turns numb), and the bite goes away in a day or two.
What’s with those crazy markings? Those bright yellow stripes and spots might look pretty intimidating, but actually, they’re the spider’s camouflage. In a heavily wooded area, sunlight only comes through the leaves in little splotches. So, in the wild, these spiders’ markings help them blend in with their surroundings.
The females can have a leg span of more than four inches, while the more petite males are typically only about one inch long. The spiders’ life cycle lasts less than a year. Their eggs hatch at the end of winter, and they reach adulthood sometime in late summer or early fall (which is why nobody saw them until recently). Once winter brings colder temperatures, the adult spiders die.
Why, oh why, are they furry?
What do they eat (not freshmen, I hope)?
In some spider species the male gets eaten after sex, right? So, how about these guys — are they lucky, or not so lucky?
They mostly eat very small insects, like gnats and flies, although they have been known to catch lizards occasionally.
Do they bite? A safe rule to live by is that if it has a mouth, it bites. But these spiders won’t exactly ninja-leap off their webs to attack you. Pretty much the only way to get them to bite you is to grab or squeeze them, or otherwise make them fear for their little lives. So, if you do get bitten, you basically deserved it.
It’s actually not entirely clear why these spiders have furry bits — but they do, on three out of four pairs of legs. Many spiders have hairs that serve a sensory purpose — sensing vibrations, like a cat’s whiskers. Or, weirder still, some spiders have hairs on their feet that they use to smell and taste.
This is actually a bit of an urban legend. Some spiders do get an unhappy ending after their happy ending, but this is the exception rather than the rule. Still, orb-weaver courtship is a complicated and delicate process. If a male is interested in a female, he carefully climbs onto her web and plucks the strands in a just-so sort of way. Then, as Edwards put it, “if she doesn’t respond aggressively,” their spidery dance continues. But if she doesn’t seem interested, the male books — after all, she doesn’t have to have sex with him to eat him.
7 • October 5, 2010 • University Press • www.upressonline.com
LAUREN MAURER CONTRIBUTOR
SG leaders struggle with election math and reading comprehension
each campus grouping — Boca, Broward, Jupiter and Treasure Coast — who assist him throughout the elections process. Student Government Director Heather Bishara also supervises Levy’s work. Levy said that when the mistake was pointed out, “there was a sense of panic.” SG members started making calls and texting one another. They gathered in a circle, asking each other what to do, reading and numbering the list of winning names over and over. They even called Bishara for advice — while she was away in Georgia. “When I was called, [they asked], ‘OK, what do you do with the fact there’s 43 names? How do you swear people in if there’s 42 seats?’” Bishara said. One of the options raised was to have a runoff election between the last two candidates on the list, who tied with 87 votes. Then, Levy came across a line in the SG constitution that seemed tailor-made for the situation. A rule they weren’t following would fix the problem. On the second page of the constitution, it
“We should be re-voting. Students were allowed to vote for 42 people,” Pollock said. SERGIO N. CANDIDO “Creating a 43rd seat out of convenience, CONTRIBUTOR whether it’s righteous or not, that’s not what Illustrations by Adam Sheetz we are in this institution to do.” Pollock also said that any student could peesults for the fall election have been up for tition the student court and challenge the lemore than two weeks, but it wasn’t until the gality of future House meetings by arguing swearing-in ceremony that Student Governthat students did not vote for all 43 representament leaders realized they named too many tives. winners. Student Body President Ayden Maher agrees The news was broken minutes before the with Pollock’s view, but said that in this case meeting on Sept. 24, so Student Body President a petition doesn’t apply because the last two Ayden Maher called it off. But now SG says winning candidates were tied with the same everything’s OK — the mistake was canceled amount of votes. If one had fewer votes that out thanks to a totally different slip-up. the other, then, according to Maher, it would “We made the mistake of highlighting 43 be unfair. But he acknowledged that to some people [instead of 42],” said Elections Chair degree, it will affect how students look at SG. “It does make Student Government as an Thomas Levy, a social science education maorganization look like they didn’t know what jor. “That’s a lot of us dropping the ball.” was going on,” said Maher. “That’s the downHe counts with four commissioners, one for fall of an event like this.” Speaker of the Boca House Boris Bastidas — who was elected to the top spot last week, shortly after representatives were finally able to take the oath of office — t does make tudent overnment look like had harsher words. “They should have dealt they didn t know what was going on with that before. This shows incompetence,” Bastidas tudent ody resident yden aher said. “It’s pathetic.” says that “each Campus House of RepresentaFor his part, Elections Chair Thomas Levy tives shall consist of five seats plus one seat for told the UP last week that he regretted misevery 500 students represented on each of the counting the number of representatives on the campus[es].” The enrollment numbers had to list, as well as lacking the knowledge to update be taken from the spring semester. the number of positions before the election. Bishara, Levy and his team got together and But he thinks that something positive came out did the math. The Boca campus had around of his errors. 19,000 students; the result yielded 43 spots. “I’m extremely disappointed that it turned At that point, the equation seemed solved: out that way, and it’s just a lesson moving forThe number of people fit the number of posiward that there’s a reason why the constitution tions. is in place. It’s so that every single part of it is But that doesn’t matter, according to Alan looked over and made sure of,” Levy said. Pollock — who was last school year’s “Had the mistake not happened where we speaker of the Boca House, the highaccidentally highlighted 43 people, the cycle est paid legislative position in SG at would have continued and we wouldn’t have $10,000 a year. He said the inclusion of had proper representation on the campus. So a 43rd representative is illegal and calls it’s an unfortunate error that ended up being a for a runoff election. positive thing.”
www.upressonline.com • University Press • October 5, 2010 • 8
Believe it or not This semester’s election was one of the best-run in two years Spring 2010: The elections chair was hired at the last minute by Student Body President
Tiffany Weimar. When voting online, students were forced to vote for every ballot or not at all.
Fall 2009: The election was called off after the first day of voting, because some students couldn’t vote at all and others were voting twice or for the wrong campus — SG had the wrong list of eligible voters and didn’t realize it, allowing for these voting glitches. Election flyers also told students to vote at the wrong address: www.myfau.edu instead of myfau.fau. edu.
Spring 2009: Student Affairs wrongfully disqualified a presidential ticket because administrators misread the GPA requirements for office. The students were allowed to run after all, but the election process then dragged on for more than a month. Student Body President Abe Cohen hired the elections chair a week into election planning.
Fall 2008: Students who wanted to run for office had to sign up during summer break or the first week of classes because SG’s election timeline was so tight. New students who didn’t know about SG were at a disadvantage to insiders. Check this story on www.upressonline.com for links to articles about past election problems.
Teamwork? Exactly when Student Government realized they had an extra seat is
SG Director Heather Bishara said she doesn’t remember if she found out about it before or after the Sept. 24 House meeting. Elections Chair Thomas Levy does remember. He said he had no idea that the regulation existed and learned about it only after the confusion. “[Before], we just kind of assumed the number [of seats] from last year,” Levy said. Bishara argued that one of the reasons why they had not taken the regulation into consideration was because it was only mentioned in the SG constitution, not in the elections statutes. The documents are related, but separate. “That aspect has not been revisited — when you calculate the numbers — because it’s such a small portion of the constitution,” said Bishara. To top it off, Bishara’s and Levy’s enrollment numbers for the spring semester don’t match. Levy’s is at 19,077 students. He got it from FAU’s Office of Institutional Effectiveness and Analysis, which manages university statistics. Bishara’s is at 19,384. Fortunately, that’s not enough of a math error to mess anything else up. The UP reported in June that the Boca House should have had a 43rd seat, citing the same section of the constitution ultimately used to resolve the election.
Ayden Maher Student Body President
Heather Bishara Director of Student Government
Alan Pollock Former Speaker of the Boca House
Thomas Levy Election Chair
Boris Bastidas Speaker of the Boca House
9 • October 5, 2010 • University Press • www.upressonline.com
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FRANCO PANIZO SPORTS EDITOR Tampa Bay, FL. – Just when you thought a first-ever loss to North Texas was embarrassing, FAU followed that up by getting pummeled by USF in a defeat that Owls players will want to quickly erase from their memories. FAU dropped to 1-3 on the season on Oct. 2, losing 31-3 to the Bulls at Raymond James Stadium. The defeat, which was the Owls’ most lopsided loss thus far this season, was made worse due to three starters suffering injuries. Quarterback Jeff Van Camp (cervical neck sprain), center Jimmie Colley (head injury) and right tackle Max Karrick (knee sprain) all were removed from the game. Of the three knocks, Colley’s is the most concerning, especially considering how thin the Owls are at offensive line. Head coach Howard Schnellenberger admitted after the game that the injuries were “very potentially bad,” but said the severity of each would not be known until sometime this week. Even before the pair of injuries, the offensive line had a big part in the Owls’ dreadful showing. The unit failed to open up holes for the running game, and was constantly allowing defenders to get in the backfield to make a tackle or pressure Van Camp. In fact, the Bulls recorded seven sacks against Van Camp. “It wasn’t very good,” said Schnellenberger of the offensive line’s performance. “I don’t want to berate them right now because [USF] brought a lot of heat that other teams haven’t been bringing, and they brought it on an ongoing basis.” As bad as the offensive line played, equally as bad was the performance of tight end Rob Housler. A week after having an up-and-down game against North Texas, Hou-
sler struggled to make an impact against the Bulls. He dropped two key passes, including one on the opening drive that resulted in an interception and wound up giving USF an early 7-0 lead through a five-yard run from running back Moise Plancher. “We didn’t want to start like that, at all,” said Van Camp, who believes his injury won’t keep him from missing anytime. “Everybody was pretty hyped up before the game. It just wasn’t a good way to start it off. I really wish I could have that drive back.” It may seem like Van Camp wants to shoulder the blame for that turnover, but the reality is that it was a good throw that Housler should have caught.
touchdown pass from quarterback BJ Daniels to receiver Dontavia Bogan. “We didn’t see [that type of play] in practice, but we said it at halftime, here come the gimmicks, here come the tricks,” said linebacker Malik Eugene, who played in a homecoming of sorts at Raymond James Stadium. “We had to look for all of that.” Making matters tougher for the Owls was the physical nature of USF. There were multiple hard hits on both ends of the ball, not the least of which was a tackle from Bulls safety Mark Joyce on tailback Xavier Stinson that was so hard that Stinson’s helmet popped off. “That was probably the most physical game we’ve played all season,” said linebacker Dino Cox. “They came out and ran the ball like they said they would, and the o-line was a pretty good, physical o-line.” From offense to defense, and even special teams, the Owls were dominated by the Bulls, and that type of outing can’t help a team which has now dropped three consecutive decisions after winning a season opener in the most dramatic of ways. To save its quickly flatlining season, FAU must now turn the focus on conference games, which will start up again when the Owls visit ULM on Oct. 9. “That’s all that matters: conference games from here on out,” said Van Camp. “We’re going to turn it around because I know a lot of seniors don’t want to go out a loser. Last week was a disheartening loss. I don’t want to say it carried over a little bit, but it was definitely a heartbreaker. We’ve got to turn it around.” FAU needs to turn it around because failure to get back in the win column against ULM wouldn’t only extend this poor string of results, it would likely end the Owls’ season even before the midway point.
“It hurts, it brings your morale down.” This should come as no surprise, though. Housler’s envious 6-foot-5 frame makes it tempting for coaches and Van Camp to want to throw his way, but through the first third of the season, he has shown repeatedly that he is anything but. It may even be time for backup tight end Darian Williams to climb above Housler in the depth chart because right now Housler is harming the Owls as much as he is helping. “It hurts, it brings your morale down,” said backup running back Willie Floyd about the team falling behind so early. As for the Owls’ defense, the unit held up well in the first half, but could not muster up a repeat of that in the second. On the third play of the second half, USF fooled FAU with a flea flicker that resulted in a 38-yard
11 • October 5, 2010 • University Press • www.upressonline.com
FAU puts forth disastrous performance in defeat to USF
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G N m O a L 4 T il t H G s I e N o L g L y A t ls a Par i c e p S k n i Dr s e z i r P h s a C J D E V LI
Off The Hookah INSISTS you Drink Responsibly
15 • October 5, 2010 • University Press • www.upressonline.com
Las Olas Riverfront 300 SW 1ST AVE. Suite 103 DOWNTOWN FT. LAUDERDALE 954 761 8686 www.OffTheHookahFL.com
H M OO YS L TICIG A RO NS O W TS EL O CO C M T8 E th S
Hooligans welcomes California legends MYSTIC ROOTS October 8th 2010... OFFICIAL CD RELEASE PARTY...BRAND NEW ALBUM â€œCali-HIâ€? DROPS WORLD WIDE.. Serving up an original style based in reggae, hip-hop, and dancehall (with overtones of rock, funk, and ska), a Mystic Roots Band live concert guarantees not just at music for your... ears, but also... a high-energy show and powerful experience youâ€™ll never forget. This Chico-born, now San Diego-based group brings a brand new sound while embracing the nature of roots reggae wholeheartedly and performing it with smooth vocals/ harmonies, energetic freestyles and beat-boxing, all over a solid groove.
&RQFHUW+DOO The Resolvers Friday, October 1
Hooligans Opening Celebration
Son of a Bad Man, Mission Hill, Shinobi Ninja Wednesday, October 13
Tribal Seeds Sunday, October 17 First and Only South Florida Show
Cypress & Cope Saturday, November 6
Si Senorita Live Saturday, November 13 High Times, Hangovers, and Harmonies Friday, November 19 Papadosio w/The Malah + DJ Craig Heneveld Saturday, December 18
561-347-ROCK (7625) 36 SE 3rd Street, Boca Raton, FL 33432 facebook.com/hooligansboca
16â€˘ October 5, 2010 â€˘ University Press â€˘ www.upressonline.com
MYSTIC ROOTS October 8th 2010... Official Cd release party...BRAND NEW ALBUM â€œCali-HIâ€? DROPS WORLD WIDE