Jungle Fever is Lee's fifth full length feature film and his four previous efforts can be found on videocassette.

He broke onto the American film scene in 1987 with the very funny and somewhat controversial She's Gotta Have It. Spike and his character Mars Blackmon, who also appears periodically in Air Jordan commercials, received widespread critical acclaim with a story of a young woman's insatiable libido.

Lee returned the next year with his weakest picture to date, School Daze which chronicles the trials and tribulations of the fraternities and sororities at an all black university. Complete with dance numbers and showtunes, this ambitious movie never really gets off the ground.

I've already told you all you need to know about Do The Right Thing and I highly recommend you watch what should turn out to be one of the classic movies in American film.

Last year's Mo' Betta Blues also falls short of the amazing standards set by Jungle Fever and Do the Right Thing, but dazzling performances by Wesley Snipes and Denzel Washington save the film from ignominy. Even when he is not at his own best, Lee's work still makes most other pictures look like tripe.

Any of these options will result in some entertaining and informative viewing.

-- John Griffin









To get turned on.

That is one visitor's response to a board asking "Why are you here?" at the Houston Center for Photography's current exhibit, "Sexuality: Image and Control." The questions continue: What is pornographic? erotic? sensuous? Can we permit censorship? Does context affect perception?

In the current exhibit, on display through June 23, HCP presents a series of black-and-white photographs that portrays viewpoints of sexuality in both individual and societal contexts. In doing so, HCP not only displays the images themselves, but also addresses related problems and issues by providing panels for visitors to answer controversial questions.

(Ironically, HCP directors may unwillingly be answering their own question about censorship. For the first time since it opened, HCP is not allowing anyone under the age of 18 in the show.)

The show, which was mounted by Film in the Cities in St. Paul last year in response to the Jesse Helms-NEA controversy, focuses on all aspects of sexuality: male and female nudes, homoeroticism, homophobia and heterosexual love and desire. They range from classic portrayals of nakedness by Joe Ziolkowski to sexually aggressive metaphors and illusions by Dorit Cypis and Holly Wright.

The photographs themselves run the full gamut. Some accent beautiful, subtle parts of the human body; others are harsh and vulgar images of not-so-attractive men and women reminiscent of the cheesy little pictures you see on the adult cards at Spencer's.

Most of the images are standard shots of nude men and women and related body parts. None of the images are ground-breaking in their portrayals of sexuality, though Ziolkowski comes close with three images from his series,"Confront the Issue," which deal with homophobia. Ziolkowski's subject is a trio of nude men, two who are embracing and one near the edge of the image, cringing away from the couple and hiding his eyes.

The answers to the questions on the panels range from vulgar hand signs to complete, thought-provoking statements about the degeneration of the world. One visitor quoted at length from John Stuart Mill's "The Subjection of Women," another said feminism is dead and yet another complained sex is being used as a weapon.

Also on display are a half-dozen nude photography books, including Robert Mapplethorpe's Black Book, which has been tagged as flagrantly homoerotic and pornographic by Helms and his supporters. Like the panels, the books also serve to provide a context in which to judge what is hanging on the walls.

The strength of the show lies in its ability to record a small bit of society's conscience. In light of the controversy concerning Jesse Helms and art funding, the exhibit is obviously not representative of society's beliefs as a whole. The show, however, does expose the viewer to a social climate in which to judge the pieces and see them in a different way. When at first you look, you see what you want to see. After being exposed to the other viewpoints, step back and look again. It may or may not be the same thing you saw the first time.









Beat Temple, a popular local band, played Fitzgerald's Saturday night to an approving and diversified crowd that mirrored the band's eclectic brand of funk/rock.

"Houston is a melting pot and our music is a reflection of that," said bassist Carl Jones. "Our influences stem from James Brown-type funk to gospel music. We like Aerosmith as much as the Ohio Players."

The "Aerosmith" sound became evident early on as guitarist Gary Wayde played heavy power chords underneath the pulsing funk beat set by drummer Greg "Tuesday" Henderson and accented by percussionist Lisa McCaffety, using an assortment of tom-toms, cowbells and woodblocks.

The gospel sound came from back-up vocalist Della Banks, who once sang in a Baptist church. Lead singer Ralz Mathews strutted on stage like a Mick Jagger/Prince master of ceremonies, exhorting the crowd to sing with him in a question and answer type ritual.

Jones describes the music as spiritually uplifting. "We talk about a lot of social issues like war and homelessness. The only way to take medicine is with sugar. We're not a party band but you can dance to our music."

Beat Temple played a tight show for two hours; they proved they are a professional band ready to make a move.








On Friday night, fearless funk fans and someone's mother forded the flooded streets to Fitzgerald's to flail and fling their bodies to the hard funky sounds of Bouffant Jellyfish, Joint Chiefs, and Neckbone.

Neckbone, a local band hailing from humble Humble, Texas, opened the triple bill with their own brand of hard and heavy funk. Funk? What is funk anyway?

According to Webster, funk is "to give off smoke," which doesn't help much obviously. The best definition Daryl Hoyle said he's heard is "It's funk if you can hear the bass line."

Daryl Hoyle happens to be the vocalist for Neckbone, with his brother Joel laying down the bass, Sidney Bolmey on the guitar and Matt Kelly playing furiously on the drums. Ben Perez is the "dancer."

If ripping tunes like "Tribal Bones" are funk, then funk means "fun." If you're interested in energetic performances and a groove you could drive a tractor through, keep an eye out for Neckbone.

There's a tentative gig set for July 5 at Fitzgerald's again, this time with Global Village and the Gingerbread Men.

Second to hit the stage were the Joint Chiefs, who marshalled the stage rather quickly with their own arsenal of original meat. If song titles like "Death Ska" and "Out on a Limbo" give you any idea -- it's like ska with an edge, thrash with a tongue-in-cheek sophistication, funk-on-a-stick. It's a hell of a lot of fun, too.

The stickwork was provided by Bret Needham. Lisa Harrington was behind the drums with Scott Beliveau's additional percussion laying down the beat. Joey "Mack" Salinas played his guitar and Matt Kelly had hold of the microphone. Kirk Heydt was the tenor sax who crooned on their version of Fear's "New York's Allright (If You Like Saxophones)."

You can catch them this Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday at the Axiom along with Sprawl, Fleshmop and De Schmog as they perform Andrew Lloyd Weber's "Jesus Christ Superstar." How often does an opportunity like this come around, hmmm?

Topping the bill for Friday night was Bouffant Jellyfish, the popular Austin funksters who took to the stage with their usual flair, and the slam pit quickly grew to frightening proportions.

In fact, Bouffant Jellyfish is one of the few bands of the Replacements tradition that openly encourages stage diving (as long as the monitors aren't used for launching platforms). They consider it all a part of audience participation.

With the almost-shotgun marriage of a heavy metal lead to a much wah-wahed rhythm guitar, the band creates music conducive to dancing and slight bodily harm, with rousing songs like "Whooly Mammoth" and "Gonna Tellya Mother." The latter song was a special request by one Jellyfish fan who brought along his mother, a pleasant-looking woman in her mid-30s or 40s.

Bouffant Jellyfish not only honored the request (being the swell guys they are), but brought the mother up to stage dive during a particularly dynamic place in the song. It was a nice dive, too: full swan, nice extension, good form. She was passed around over the heads of the crowd for maybe six or seven seconds at least, which is an enviable feat for the most veteran of divers.

You may have missed Mother's Day, but Bouffant Jellyfish will be playing at the Galveston Beach Party June 22. So, why don't you catch them there. And take your mother.








Two years ago I walked out of Greenway Plaza in an absolute rage, having just been bombarded by one of the most beautiful yet chilling movies I'd ever witnessed.

Do The Right Thing, Spike Lee's haunting narrative centered around the hottest day of the year in New York City's Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood, rocked the motion picture industry and brought millions of people face to face with the continuing presence of racial tension and injustice in our country.

Monday night, I left the Galleria with a similar feeling churning in my gut. Jungle Fever, the latest Spike Lee joint brings back some of the actors and all of the uneasiness of his 1989 tour de force to the streets and bedrooms of Harlem and Bensonhurst.

Like Do The Right Thing, this movie is about race. Specifically, the film concerns itself with the ancient taboo of miscegenation, but undercurrents of violent hate and malice, family loyalty and religious tunnelvision manifest themselves in a tightly knit fabric of emotion and pain.

Critics doubting Lee's mastery of his craft need look no further than this latest effort. His command of the camera is flawless, punctuating vibrant dialogue with rich colors, tight closeups and brilliant devices. Where Do The Right Thing's sets and costumes utilized vibrant primary colors to suggest explosive, heat-of-the-moment emotion, Lee accentuates Jungle Fever in deep earth tones, representing the tightly packed and slow burning flame of anger as it smolders over a period of time.

Lee, who wrote, produced and directed the film coaxes absolutely stunning performances out of an exceptional cast. Wesley Snipes plays Flipper Purify, a happily married architect who falls for his beautiful Italian secretary, Angela Tucci, played by Annabella Sciorra. The seduction takes place over a few late night Chinese dinners in the office and sucks not only the two characters into its maelstrom, but the viewer as well, in one of many vital and stirring scenes.

Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee, John Turturro and Lee himself are all returning veterans of Lee joints and fine actors who collectively bring a sense of stark realism to the film, making it impossible to ignore the myriad issues at play within the narrative.

Fortunately, performances across the board are fabulous, allowing the story lines and subplots to metamorphose into palpable lives and situations which raise serious questions about the state of interracial and intraracial harmony and ethnocentrism in general.

Coming in right on the heels of the most rabid attack of jingoism this country has faced in ages and serving as a timely prelude to the celebration of Juneteenth, Jungle Fever stimulates some hard looks at the dangers of narrow-minded blindness.

Lee, who pulls no punches, does not reserve his commentary for any one group. All are brought into the fold and made accountable for their own actions, as are specific individuals.

The result is a poignant and heartrending work which hits the mark from the opening credits to the final frame. Lee, who deserves infinitely more respect from the Motion Picture Academy of Arts and Sciences, may finally get what he is due with this picture, specifically, an Oscar. More likely though, the powers that oversee the distribution of such honors will continue to thumb their noses, hiding what seems suspiciously similar to institutional racism behind claims of controversy and rabblerousing.



Jungle Fever is Lee's fifth full length feature film and his four previous efforts can be found on videocassette.

He broke onto the American film scene in 1987 with the very funny and somewhat controversial She's Gotta Have It. Spike and his character Mars Blackmon, who also appears periodically in Air Jordan commercials, received widespread critical acclaim with a story of a young woman's insatiable libido.

Lee returned the next year with his weakest picture to date, School Daze which chronicles the trials and tribulations of the fraternities and sororities at an all black university. Complete with dance numbers and showtunes, this ambitious movie never really gets off the ground.

I've already told you all you need to know about Do The Right Thing and I highly recommend you watch what should turn out to be one of the classic movies in American film.

Last year's Mo' Betta Blues also falls short of the amazing standards set by Jungle Fever and Do the Right Thing, but dazzling performances by Wesley Snipes and Denzel Washington save the film from ignominy. Even when he is not at his own best, Lee's work still makes most other pictures look like tripe.

Any of these options will result in some entertaining and informative viewing. Not only is Lee the best black filmmaker working today, he is quite possibly the best filmmaker, anywhere, period.

-- John Griffin









Whyis it that every time you turn around, some filmmaker is trying to make a name for himself by being controversial? Is it caused by having no real talent and hoping that B-movies only will make audiences think the filmmaker is avant-garde? Probably so.

Todd Haynes is one of these pompous artists and his film Poison falls right on the top of the trashy flick heap. Technically, Haynes has talent. Too bad his aesthetic judgment drags the film under.

Haynes combines three short films, Hero, Horror and Homo, into one feature-length film destined for the short-run-in-small-theaters niche. Haynes claims a tie-in exists among the three, but to find it you'd have to be psychic or write Haynes and ask him yourself.

The segments are true to their names. Hero is about a mother who believes her son is destined to save her from a bad marriage. In Horror a budding scientist accidentally drinks his experiment and ends up like Mr. Hyde. And then in Homo we have an inmate's one-sided view of life in all-male prison.

Obviously Haynes targeted his film for underground audiences who do not care what type of visual garbage they are subjected to. If Haynes had written the screenplay for larger audiences, he might have omitted the explicit homosexual sex scenes. (Not to say explicit heterosexual sex scenes are acceptable, they're not.)

He could have alluded to sexual activities among the men. However, he left the scenes in while hiding behind the Constitutional "freedom of speech" clause.

Unfortunately, "Homo" detracts from the other two short films in the movie. Haynes uses a different filming style in each section. "Hero" is shown in television documentary style and "Horror" is shot in black and white. When the segments are juxtaposed against one another, this effect is palatable.

Actually, the last scene of "Horror" is the best. Emily Dickinson's poem I heard a fly buzz when I died is brought to life. It's complete with the faces of angels visible only in snatches because of a preoccupation with an insect.

Too bad Haynes tries to make a statement with "Homo." The film's potential as a positive vehicle for artistic motion pictures is obliterated.

If bad art interests you, then pack yourself over to the River Oaks Theatre and see Poison. You'd better hurry though, because it has a short run in the small theater: Friday, June 14-27.









Beginning next fall, the watchful eyes of college athletics will be anxiously observing the Southwest Conference.

Starting Aug. 1, the SWC Presidents' rule concerning Proposition 48 will take effect. The controversial measure could ban some students from playing in the conference.

According to the rule, a Prop. 48 student must attend a junior college and get his associate's degree before entering a school in the SWC.

A Prop. 48 student risks losing his athletic eligiblity and any chance of financial aid if he registers for regular university admission. Students with less than minimum Scholastic Achievement Test or ACT scores falls under Prop. 48.

Critics of the rule have called it a violation of the consititution because it bars an individual from getting an education.

"It is unconstitutional because it is biased against minority students," Oklahoma Athletic Director Donnie Duncan said.

Duncan said SAT and ACT scores have been proven biased against minority students. The minimum SAT score is 700; the ACT minimum is 16.

The SWC is the only conference in Division I-A to institute such a rule.

The SWC believes the rule will bring up the graduation rates among athletes and will encourage student-athletes to make their educations a top priority.

UH President Marguerite Ross Barnett said she wished the rule could have been reshaped.

"In my view, we as school presidents should do everything to make students successful," Barnett said. "Students mature at different rates, and the rule goes against that principle."

Barnett said the rule could be challenged in the courts. Schools' legal advisors don't feel comfortable with the rule, she said.

The university is working within the rule to provide tutoring and other services to help student-athletes, she added.

Officials from around the conference don't seem to mind the criticism and the isolation by other conferences because this rule could be voted on next January by the NCAA.

"The conference is taking a pretty firm stance," SWC Commissioner Fred Jacoby said. "The measure will be closely evaluated on a yearly basis."

"This same rule is being considered as legislation by the NCAA, Jacoby said."

This rule is only part of a movement by the presidents to take more control of their respective athletic departments.

Athletic directors in the SWC have their hands tied.

"We are members of the SWC and we will adhere to the rule," UH Athletic Director Rudy Davalos said. "We did not sign any Prop. 48 students."

One of the first casualties of the presidents' rule is Houston basketball recruit Timmy Moore. The 6'6 guard from Milby was a top five recruit in the state.

Moore committed to play for UH, but withdrew because of grades and test scores.

Moore will not be able to play for the Cougars until he gets his associates degree in at least two years. He is attending Lee Junior College.










Report cards for graduation rates of university student athletes will be sent beginning in 1993 and it doesn't appear to paint a pretty picture of UH athletes.

Through pressure by congressional leaders, the NCAA will begin disclosing graduation rates beginning

with the entering class of 1989.

According to figures recently released the Southwest Conference, 83 freshman-recruited athletes entered in 1984 and only 18.1 percent graduated by August 1989.

Of 30 UH football players recruited in 1984, only 20 graduated within a five-year period.

In basketball, although only two UH basketball players were recruited that year, neither player graduated by 1989.

Many UH officials have argued the validity of the recently published statistics.

UH President Marguerite Ross Barnett suggests you look at the entire spectrum when examining the issue.

"If you look at the university as a whole the results (of student-athletes and regular students) are really very similar," Barnett said.

Barnett also noted that urban universities, such as UH, tend to have different graduation rates than small private residential universities. She also points that many more part-time and six-to-eight-year students attend UH than at small universities, which is one of the reasons why graduation rates are low.

"We serve a diverse student population," she said. "We help the students graduate in their time frame and in the most efficient way."

Barnett, who has been at UH for only nine months, said that she is taking appropriate measures to improve the graduation rates of all students, but is still waiting to generate enough funds to develop the programs.

"Last summer (UH Athletic Director) Rudy Davalos and I spoke about developing a program to provide additional help for student-athletes. We are very concerned that they have a good opportunity to stay in school," Barnett said.

Davalos, UH athletic director, sees the recently released statistics of graduating athletes as trivial history.

"That is living in the past," he said emphatically. "We don't care about what happened in the 1984. I am only concerned about what we do in the future. We are a state-funded university. We don't have the ability to provide special programs like private schools. We're doing what we can."

Faculty representative James Ben

brook agrees with Barnett that UH has many students who don't intend to graduate in four years. Benbrook, Department of Physics chairman, also points out that the problem stems from inappropriate

counseling during the student-athlete's freshman and sophomore years.

"The counseling process is what we need to look at. I'm not certain that the right counseling goes on the first and second years," Benbrook said.

Some school officials also believe the road to a degree is much harder on the student-athlete than on the regular student.

They believe the student-athlete does more outside the classroom, so consequently he or she takes fewer classes.

Even though UH has fewer funds to supply its athletes with additional academic support than the other "big two" Texas universities, the University of Texas and Texas A&M, school officials still believe that improvement in graduation rates is inevitable.

One reason is Prop 48. Houston officials are hoping the rule, which was adopted in 1983, will cause the athlete to discipline him or herself to become a better student before attending college.

Michelle Maddox, UH's athletic coordinator, said the monitoring of athletes' academic progress has expanded but that much of it depends on the student.

"We've increased the staff here but it is an ongoing process. We can only do so much," Maddox said.








UH Diver Hanneke Faber was named to the Academic All-America team in District VI.

A total of 11 female athletes from nine different Division IA schools in Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi comprise the 1990-91 GTE Academic All-America At-Large teams for District VI as selected by the College Sport Information Directors of America.

Faber is a senior from Holland. She has a 3.9 grade-point average and holds a degree in journalism and political science.

Her name will be entered in the national ballot. The national all-America team will be selected June 24.

Other Southwest Conference selections are diver Kelly Jenkins from UT and Lisa Stone, a track and cross country star from Baylor.

-- Sports information









The Major League Baseball Draft, held June 3-5, resulted in four UH players being drafted by professional teams.

Left-handed pitcher Vaughn Eshelman, the first UH player drafted this year, was taken by the Baltimore Orioles in the fourth round, the 108th

selection overall. Eshelman, at 6-foot-3 and 190 pounds, led the Cougars in strikeouts last season and posted a 4.66 earned-run average.

The Westfield High School product was excited but also surprised that he was taken so high in the draft.

"I was surprised that I went in the fourth round; I expected to be taken closer to the 10th," Eshelman said.

Having already signed a contract with the Orioles, Eshelman will leave for Bluefield, Va., Wednesday to begin working out with the team's class A team.

Baseball Head Coach Bragg Stockton believes Eshelman will be successful in the major leagues.

"Vaughn is young and he's a left-hander, so that gives him an edge. He's got an excellent chance," Stockton said.

The Oakland Athletics took 6-foot-3 shortstop Scott Sheldon in the eighth round. Sheldon, who hit .313 with 38 runs batted in and six homeruns, signed a seven-year contract with the A's to play on their class A team in Medford, Oregon.

"Sheldon's got great range and great hands. He can play shortstop with anybody," Stockton said.

Junior right-handed pitcher Ben Weber was also drafted in the 20th round by the Toronto Bluejays. Weber, 6-foot-2 with a 4.66 ERA, signed with Toronto, much to the chagrin of Stockton.

"Weber should have never signed. They pressured him into it. His offer wasn't very good. I'm shocked they got to him," Stockton said.

Stockton said Weber could be one of the top pitchers in the Southwest Conference next year, but that he still needed to sharpen his skills at the collegiate level.

"He's got a ways to go, but he's on his own now," Stockton said.

In the 29th round, the San Francisco Giants took reliever Al Benavides. The 6-foot right-hander from Corpus Christi led the Cougars in victories last season, posting a 10-5 record with a 2.73 ERA.

Benavides is already in Phoenix, Ariz., working out with the Giants' class A team.

Stockton believes Benavides has the right mental attitude to make it in professional baseball.

"He's a tough competitor. I wish him the best of luck," Stockton said.










Marvin Zindler would have been rabid.

Food stored at improper temperatures and the discovery of black slime in some ARA ice machines on campus are some of the health violations recently corrected by UH food administrators.

The administrators say they have corrected all health violations found during inspections made after a large group of students complained of vomiting and stomach pains after eating at Oberholtzer cafeteria in April.

City and State Health Department officials inspected the dining hall and UH closed it in until it could meet official health standards.

Subsequent inspections conducted between April 15 and 19 on eight other UH food establishments revealed many critical health violations.

Food service administrators at the four major eating places on campus (Moody Towers, Oberholtzer, American and Satellite Cafeterias) said some of the violations have

Already been corrected. These included serving potentially hazardous foods at improper temperatures, the presence of black slime in ice machines, and, on one occasion, an employee in Oberholtzer

who used a table-wiping cloth to clean his ear.

However, The Daily Cougar found a refrigeration unit leaking condensation into an area where whole onions and bread were stored and a sink of dishwater without sufficient amounts of sanitizing iodine.

Oberholtzer Food Service Manager Calvin Dunn said state inspectors said the leaking condensation was "okay."

But Houston Department of Health and Human Services Supervisor Joe Zuchlewski, responsible for the area around UH and who helped with the UH inspections, said, "Condensation from a blower is not good. That's just basic health sense."

Food service managers at the four cafeterias gave conflicting statements on the frequency of inspections.

Some managers said state inspectors come once every other month while others said once every six months.

Rayfield Joiner, food service director of Moody Towers, said inspections are done "damn near daily." Bob Santana, the Satellite's food service director,

however, said inspections are done "at least once a month." All managers agreed UH officials inspect their facilities once a month.

Texas Health Department Chief Sanitarian Charles Palmer said there is no statute for an inspection time schedule, but after the Oberholtzer incident, the State Health Department and UH administration agreed to conduct two inspections a year.

Before the agreement, state health officials inspected campus dining facilities only when requested by UH or state officials, or as needed, Palmer said.

The city normally is not allowed to inspect state and federal institutions.

Assistant DHHS Bureau Chief Buck Buchanan said his department was only allowed to inspect the UH dining halls at this time as a support service to the city's epidemiology department, which studies the incidence, distribution and control of disease in a population.

The epidemiology department, having some jurisdiction in cases of food poisoning, was asked by the State Department of Health to help in the investigation of the Oberholtzer matter.

At one point city officials as well as state officials were allowed to inspect UH services, but were stopped in the early '80s.

"We were `politely' asked to leave before," Zuchlewski said.

Zuchlewski said DHHS was told it didn't have jurisdiction over a state or federal institution.

DHHS's legal department confirmed this and since then the city hasn't inspected UH food establishments.

An opinion written by the department's legal council says, "The Consumer Health Services Division lacks legal authority to inspect the food operations of federal agencies, regardless of whether or not such food operations are managed by private vendors. The power of the federal government to protect precludes such intrusion by the city."

Donna Janus, a spokeswoman for DHHS, said UH is a state and federally funded institution. "There should be an independent chain of command outside the food service. Otherwise, it becomes too incestuous."

Palmer said this division between food services and the inspection agency isn't neccessary because his department isn't affected by state politics.









Unless the Texas Legislature pumps more dollars into higher education, there may be little relief in store for UH faculty facing salary inequities.

Salary compression, the phenomenon in which the university hires new faculty at market rates exceeding the salaries made by veteran faculty is "not likely to go away in the '90s, in fact it is likely to be exacerbated," Senior Vice President James Pickering said.

As of June 3, The Texas Faculty Association had received 47 complaints from UH faculty, ranging from letters to packets outlining their disgruntlement with the university's merit system of awarding raises.

John Bernard, president of the Faculty Senate, said salary compression and inequities in the merit system are but symptoms of the overall problem -- a lack of state funding.

"The overall problem is that the university should not be playing the market game," Bernard said. "The university could minimize the market factor by making sure we give raises to current faculty. But to do that means a whole lot more (money) from the Legislature."

Dean of Social Sciences Harrell Rodgers, who chairs UH's University Legislative Relations Committee, said, "Basically, the problem is that the state hasn't given decent raise pools in a long time. If they would give decent raise pools we would be able to clear out these inequities."

Rodgers said the merit system, which awards raises based on research, is not the problem. Instructors are hired on the assumption they understand UH is a research university.

Instructors are required to teach only a couple of courses a semester with the understanding they are expected to turn out first-rate research, Rodgers said. Faculty that "don't wish to be researchers are simply at the wrong institution."

Faculty are judged on three criteria -- teaching, research and service. Teaching and research are given equal emphasis, Rodgers said.

In the College of Social Sciences, faculty are judged in a complicated peer-review process where instructors are ranked in the three categories. Those who score at the top get the best merit raises, he said, and those who do poorly don't get good raises.

Rodgers said students evaluate all classes for teaching and his college even evaluates class syllabi.

"I think the quality (of teaching) is actually very good," Rodgers said. "It is really very silly to indicate teaching is not good when the evidence suggests otherwise."

Inequities existing in the merit system result from a lack of money, Rodgers said, and subsequently, some instructors that are dedicated teachers and do adequate levels of research and service don't get rewarded.

"I think what happens is that you take care of the top-scoring people, but for the middle-range people, there is not enough money to give them what they deserve," he said.

Communications professor Donna Fox said faculty are finding it harder to strike a balance between teaching and research.

"The problem is that we got to try to do it all. There is an increasing number of students in the classes and an increasing work load -- less time, more work," Fox said. "I think that for a number of years the university has not been competitive in terms of salary raises, subsequently falling below the national average.

"The only way to get a raise is get an offer from somewhere else. Other people (faculty) negotiate and say, `They're going to pay me more money.'"

Pickering said the administration is currently trying to develop some solid policy to alleviate salary compression and inequities, but noted that a university is only as good as the funding that goes into it.

A rough approximation done by university deans showed that $2.5 million would be needed to significantly clear away problems with salary compression, which would mean a 4 percent raise in faculty salaries -- money that will have to come from the Legislature.

"The real question is to get the state to understand the investment they make in higher education," Pickering said.

As for the merit system, Pickering said it plays a vital role in the effectiveness of a modern university. UH does benefit monetarily in being a research university, he said.

"People give to winners," he said. "Traditionally, students that have graduated from better universities get better jobs. Peoples' attitudes are shaped by the institutions they go to.

"The definition of a university is a place to discuss and transmit new knowledge. Community colleges transmit knowledge, but a university is special."

Pickering said he is not convinced that the pressures felt by faculty to churn out grant proposals and publish papers are not "ultimately good pressures."

"Not all faculty research needs to result in publication -- the obligation is to keep current in your field."








When state legislators meet in a special session beginning July 8, the fate of higher education funding is likely to rest in one of three different scenarios -- and budget prospects for UH look grim.

The first scenario is a current-funding outcome, whereby the Texas Legislature would only fund higher education at current levels, raising about $5 billion. The money could come from an expansion of the sales-tax base or by substituting a corporate income tax for the franchise tax.

Harrell Rodgers, chair of UH's

University Legislative Relations Committee, said this scenario could be quite a blow to UH.

Another possibility, largely considered to be the most likely outcome, is the current-services budget, which would increase the budget to cover inflation and growth. Rodgers estimates this would give UH a budget increase in the 7 to 10 percent range, requiring perhaps more than $6 billion.

This plan would probably not require an income tax, Rodgers said.

"We would be doing (under the current-services budget) what we're doing right now," Rodgers said. "We're worried we wouldn't be able to offer as many courses or hire as much faculty."

The third scenario, under the Hobby-Hay proposals, would bring state funding to adequate levels. UH, under Hobby-Hay, master-minded by former Lt. Gov. Bill Hobby, would receive a budget increase in the 12 to 16 percent range, but it would require an income tax -- a long-shot at best.

"It (Hobby-Hay) won't solve all UH's problems, but we'll sure take it," Rodgers said.

Former Gov. John Connally, who is heading Gov. Ann Richard's Task Force on Revenue, has already indicated a state university tuition hike is justified.

Rodgers said tuition in Texas is the lowest in the United States and, in inflation-adjusted dollars, is cheaper than it was 30 years ago. Subsequently, he said a tuition hike is definitely an option in light of the bleak forecast on higher-education funding.

"I think the Legislature will take a look at it (raising tuition)," Rodgers said.

Senior Vice President James Pickering said he expects a tuition hike may be in the making.

"It's a two-edged sword -- more taxes or these fees and tuition students pay," Pickering said. "The state does not have a revenue problem. It has a problem of how to bring its tax structure in balance with the 21st Century.

"It's a tragic economic loss to the state if students can't get courses to graduate. The whole state is an economic loser."

UH's situation is ironic, Rodgers said, in that the community and alumni support the university better than ever before.

"The major problem is to get the state to finance higher education. We can't solve these problems unless the Legislature gives us support, and that depends on how well we mobilize our supporters."









A former UH employee was shot to death Sunday afternoon across the street from Moody Towers on Wheeler, Houston Police said.

Bruce Wackerle, 35, was fatally shot in the chest by a .25 automatic in the driveway of a rooming house on 4394 Wheeler at 12:30 p.m. Sunday, Sgt. Reuben Anderson of the Houston Police Department said.

Wackerle worked in electronics in the audiovisuals department of M.D. Anderson Library until last June, according to UH personnel records.

The suspect, Hermann Szmalec, 32, was arrested at the scene by HPD, who was called to the house by witnesses.

Szmalec's mother owns the rooming house and Wackerle was living there, Anderson said.

Szmalec lives on Varsity Lane, Anderson said.

A neighbor, who asked not to be identified, was home at the time.

"My roommate and I were watching TV when we heard one shot," he said.

He said he saw an ambulance and the arresting officer, J. Tubbs, when he went outside to look at the murder scene five to 10 minutes after they heard the shot.

The witness, a graduate student, said he just moved into the neighboring house for the summer sessions and never met Wackerle, Szmalec or his mother.

He said he did not fear his stretch of Wheeler because he heard the dangerous area of Wheeler was near Scott Street.

"Of course I'm surprised," he said.

UH Police Lt. Brad Wigtil said he was also shocked

"I've been here for eight years and there has never been a murder this close to campus since I've been here," he said.

The case was handled by Anderson and Sgt. Roy Ferguson of HPD. Homicides are out of UHPD's jurisdiction.

Szmalec is being charged with first degree murder and his bail has been set at $10,000.








Teamwork. That's what it took for UH's High School Equivalency Program for migrant farm workers to win second place in the Texaco-sponsored GED Academic Challenge Bowl.

"We gave it our best shot and came up winners," said team captain John Pathak.

The students are taking classes at UH as part of a program to help them prepare to take their high school equivalancy test.

Because of their migratory status, most of the students were overlooked in their previous schools when choosing sides and teams, HEP assistant director Kathy Painter said. The nature of their lifestyles forced most of them to uproot frequently, so they had to leave school. The majority of them dropped out because of absences, not academic reasons.

"The students felt these types of contests were for other kids, not them," Painter said. "It was their chance to shine and for a change, they were the stars."

The contest began in September and consisted of eight teams vying for first place. Two panels with four students and one alternate competed in five categories covering GED-related studies. It is modeled after the

television version of Texaco's Academic Challenge.

The final contest was held May 31. Julio Perez, Anthony Harrison, Lydia Cantera, Joe Rodriguez and Pathak made up the winning panel.

"The contest motivated our students. For many of them this was the first time they had ever been involved in a team effort," Painter said.

The HEP is a federally funded program designed not only to assist students in passing the GED exam, but also to help students on their journey towards continuing their education. The eight-week program began in 1969 and is one of the longest running programs of its kind in Texas.








In the future, registering for classes will be as easy as picking up a phone, but as students found out last week, the transition will not be an easy one.

Computer problems marred add/drop and late registration Thursday and Friday as many frustrated students waited for hours to get their classes.

"I've been here since eight this morning and now it's noon. I need to register, but I also need to work. You register at their convenience, not yours," said Scott Huerter, a senior psychology major.

Other students who had books to buy and other loose ends to attend to on campus took the computer failures in stride.

"I can see how the computer shutdowns were a problem for some people, but I had things to do and I don't have to work today so it wasn't a problem," said sophomore geology major Sam Sanford.

Mario Lucchesi, director of registration and academic affairs, said students were allowed to turn in their forms so they could be processed later and would be notified as to whether or not they received the classes.

Unfortunately, many of those who arrived while the registration area was closed were not notified of this policy and consequently wandered the halls of the Ezekial Cullen building in confusion.

Vice President for Information Technology Ira Weiss, said software problems caused intermittent shutdowns Thursday morning and problems with the Uninterrupted Power Supply (UPS) Friday afternoon forced them to shut off the computers for most of the day.

"On Friday, the UPS went down. It's an alternative power supply used as a backup. Without it we run the risk of crashing the system, so we actually shut it down ourselves in order to avoid that," Weiss said.

"Thursday's problem was involved with software supplied to us by our vendor, Software AG. They worked with us to correct the problem and came up with a temporary fix so we could continue registration," Weiss said. "Things like this are not totally unexpected; there are `bugs' in the system which need to be worked out."









This is the second and last part of a series on German students visiting UH for the summer.

Frank Schultze, Volker Vormstein and Klaus-Peter Urban have similar yet distinct views on international business.

Schultze, 31, an officer in the German army, is from Wilhelmshaven and has a pedagogic master's degree which combines business skills with psychology, sociology, and politics.

"Germany is exporting a lot so we need to deal with the other countries like the U.S., which is a very big market. We need to know U.S. business," he said.

Schultze has already had some business experience and contact with Americans.

"I did extra training in marketing personnel management, and I worked with U.S. officers. I made many friends and contacts, and I liked the way they think," he said.

He has an idea of his future career.

"I plan to join a German company into exports. I talked to German companies like Mercedes, Bosch and BMW. They want people with a knowledge of how foreign people think," he said.

He decided to intern at Bell Aerospace Co. after summer school ends.

"The program had very good planning, with two months of intensive business English in Germany," he said.

Volker Vormstein, 30, a captain in the German air force, is from Gummersbach and has a master's degree in business administration.

He has already been accepted for a position at Federal Express-Europe, Inc. as a station manager for ground operations. He will begin in October after he leaves the program.

He was in the program at UT-Austin in 1982.

"I want to learn cultural differences between the countries," he said.

However, he said he doesn't feel that the program is geared toward the 1992 economic union of Europe.

"It's more international with an emphasis on learning U.S. business practices," he said.

He said he has heard rumors about the United States.

"I heard that business is at a faster pace and more flexible manner. European companies are more rigid and traditional," he said.

He said he also likes the program.

"I would recommend this program to any soldier," he said.

Klaus-Peter Urban, 31, a captain in the German army, is from Bad Homburg and has a master's degree in electronics engineering.

He also has a job waiting for him in Germany at Comparex, a computer company specializing in hardware. His position will be first instructor in hardware.

He has applied to Lockheed, but he said he realizes the company is prestigious and that his chances are slim.

He does not have an internship planned, but he said the program is worthwhile.

"I think the program is effective because it provides business-oriented language training, training from U.S. professors, and a chance to see U.S. businesses in progress," he said.








A student suffered a heart attack while in class and later died on June 4, UH Police Lt. Brad Wigtil said.

Jack McMillon, 36, was attending a 6 p.m. finite math class in Room 301 of Agnes Arnold Hall when the coronary occurred, Wigtil said.

At 6:02, Political Science Professor Robert Thomas was in his PGH office when a student rushed in from the AH-PGH bridge to use the phone, Thomas said.

"I called UHPD while she (the student) called for paramedics," he said.

Wigtil said two students in the class administered emergency breathing techniques until two UHPD officers, Officer Ned Balson and Cpl. Larry Tidwell, arrived and administered a Red Cross rescue breathing procedure until paramedics arrived at about 6 p.m.

Eventually, seven paramedics were working on McMillon using CPR and life support, Wigtil said.

After paramedics worked on him for an hour in the classroom, McMillon was taken to Ben Taub Hospital, Wigtil said.

The ambulance arrived at about 7 p.m. and McMillon was pronounced dead at 7:17 p.m., Wigtil said.

Thomas said the paramedics had to take McMillon through PGH and then down to the street because the AH elevators were not working properly.










The Mortar Board presented Arthur Jago, the Marvin Hurley Professor of Business Administration, the 1991 Top Prof award Monday.

The award, which was presented by Mortar Board President Michael Danke, is in recognition of teaching and research excellence.

Jago, who received his doctorate from Yale, has been with UH since September 1976. His research has focused on leadership and managerial decision-making for 17 years. He teaches an honors course called the Introduction to Organizational and Behavioral Management and also serves as the UH Coordinator to the Madrid Business School, a joint educational project that offers an MBA in Spain.

"I really appreciate this," Jago said. "I know this is primarily for teaching, because no one reads my research," he joked.

Jago was selected from 12 nominees. The decision was based on each candidate's achievements and by past and present students' evaluations and in-class observation.

Danke, a former student of Jago's, said his method of teaching inspires his students to "go beyond the book."

This is not Jago's first award. At UH, he has received eight awards, including the 1989 Melcher Excellence-In-Service Award.

In addition, he has had research works published in 10 different magazines and journals. He recently completed his first book co-authored with Victor Vroom entitled, The New Leadership: Managing Participation in Organizations.









5/31 -- At 4:45 a.m. at Calhoun at Wheeler, three juvenile visitors were arrested for possession of a vehicle reported stolen. They were referred to Juvenile Probation and released to their parents.

6/7 -- At 1:45 p.m. at M.D. Anderson Library, a visitor was stopped after sounding the alarm while trying to leave the library with two books. The visitor received a Class C citation and was released.

6/10 -- At 12:35 p.m. at 4394 Wheeler, a suspect was arrested and charged with first-degree murder (see front page story).


5/24-5/31 -- A motorcycle license plate was stolen from the Entrance 4 parking lot.

5/28-6/3 -- Roofing materials, including tar, lead, tar paper and a ladder, were stolen from the Health Center.

6/2-6/3 -- Cash from an apartment was stolen from Cougar Place.

6/3 -- In PGH, a wallet was taken from a purse in an office.

6/4 -- A textbook was stolen from a student in the UC and a purse was stolen in Melcher Hall.

6/4-6/5 -- In Garrison Gym, a UH computer was stolen from an unlocked office.

6/5 -- A purse was stolen from the Hilton Hotel; four photos from a display were stolen in the UC; a locked bicycle was stolen from the Engineering Bldg., North Wing; and in Lot 16B, a rear license plate was stolen.

5/31-6/1 -- In Lot 1A, a rear license plate and antenna were stolen.

6/4-6/7 -- In Moody Towers, a locked bicycle was stolen.

6/7 -- In Lot 1A, a motorcycle license plate was stolen.

6/8 -- At the 2,500 block of Leek St., a road sign was stolen.


5/31-6/3 -- In the E. Cullen Circle, a parking lot access gate arm was broken.

6/1 -- At the Cambridge Oaks Apartments, stairs were damaged.

6/3 -- In PGH, 27 packages of candy were stolen from a vending machine with broken glass.

5/30-5/31 -- In Lot 1A, an unattended vehicle was struck while parked.

6/5 -- In E. Cullen Circle, a parking lot access gate arm was broken; in Lot 9C, an unattended vehicle was struck while parked.

6/6 -- In Lot 1B, a parking lot access gate arm was broken.

NOTE: The dates given for thefts and vandalism refer to the approximate time when items were stolen or vandalized.


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