COUNCIL APPROVES FEE HIKES

by Karen Snelling

Daily Cougar Staff

Part-time students may pay more student service fees next year.

The Student Fee Advisory Committee (SFAC) recommended on Wednesday dropping full-time student status to six hours from nine hours.

If SFAC's recommendation is supported by UH President James Pickering and the Board of Regents, next year's students with six or more hours will pay $96 each semester for student service fees, and part-time students will pay higher fees than last year.

Without lowering the full-time hour rate and increasing part-time fees, SFAC would have to cut an additional $157,761 from the 1993-94 budgets requested by student service groups, said Rodger Peters, SFAC chairman.

Although part-time fees would increase, students with less than six hours would be better off than they were two years ago, Peters said.

He said service fees for students taking one hour would increase next year to $16 from $11. However, students would still be paying less than they did in the 1991-92 school year when the fee was $25, he said.

Assuming this student fee increase goes through, SFAC approved a 1993-94 budget of $5,910,213 that it will recommend for student service groups, Peters said.

Out of the 28 groups considered for SFAC funding, five were refused extra-funding requests for this spring and summer.

Scholarships and Financial Aid's request for $76,000 wasn't approved because this service doesn't benefit a majority of students, Peters said.

"We (SFAC) feel this group should be supported by the school and not the students," he said.

Although SFAC also voted against giving $10,000 to the Child Care Center's financial aid program for the spring and summer, it approved a $20,000 allocation for the center's 1993-94 financial aid budget.

Other groups not getting extra spring and summer funding were Learning Support Services ($12,010), Counseling and Testing ($18,397) and the Parent Education Project ($3,493).

For this spring and summer, SFAC approved $1,300 out of $11,934 requested by the Center for Students with Disabilities and $5,310 out of $10,620 requested by the Debate Society.

SFAC voted against extra funding for next year for the Blaffer Gallery ($14,400) and Student Legal Services ($14,000).

Because Blaffer Gallery receives support from the Houston community, SFAC chose not to fund this group with student fees, Peters said.

"SFAC voted against the Student Legal Services' request for extra salary funding because it doesn't actually represent students in court," Peters added.

Peters said each year, approximately 700 students out of 33,000 use the service to get legal advice from the advisor or a third-year law student.

SFAC recommended partially funding 1993-94 requests from the Cougar band, Learning Support Services and the S.T.E.P.S. program.

T he band asked for $11,000 extra for next year, but SFAC suggested allocating $3,500 in the spring, so it can get new uniforms, and $7,500 next year, Peters said.

Although SFAC approved of giving $8,280 extra funding to the Learning Support Services for next year's salaries, it voted against an additional $20,000 to hire more tutors.

SFAC also approved $38,352 out of $58,154 requested from S.T.E.P.S., an alcohol and substance-abuse awareness program.

SFAC will present its recommendations to Elwyn Lee, vice president for student affairs, and Pickering for approval on Friday.

 

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STUDENTS ASK FOR VOICE ON GOVERNING BOARDS

by Rivka Gewirtz

Daily Cougar Staff

Students from around the state stood before the Texas House Committee on Higher Education and demanded fair representation on school governing boards.

UH student regent Mitch Rhodes; Sherry Boyles, legislative director of UT; and Steve Beller, Texas A&M student government president, addressed the committee Wednesday night.

The HCEC reviewed House Bill 95, introduced by representative Sherry Greenberg (D-Austin). The bill asks for a student regent who can participate at board meetings.

As it stands now, UH is the only Texas university that has a student regent, but this regent cannot speak at board meetings and has no vote.

"The only way to speak at a board meeting is to petition 10 days in advance. Most of the time, I don't know about a meeting until three days in advance, and then I don't even have time to find out students concerns, Rhodes said.

If the bill passes through the HCEC, it will go back to the house floor with a recommendation to adopt it as a law. Many representatives questioned the importance of the bill and questioned the students for information which could help them form a decision.

Representative Bill Blackwood (R-Mesquite) said he doubted Texas Governor Ann Richards would want the responsibility of appointing more positions. Rhodes said the bill would add 11 appointments that would not make much of an impact on the more than 200 Richards already has made.

Representative Tony Goolsby (R-Dallas) said he feared a student regent would ask for travel funds from the state, but Greenberg made it clear the funds would come from each university's student government.

Although most of the committee members were still researching the topic, some already expressed positive views on the issue.

"There are situations where students are put in a position of reacting rather than being able to help plan," said Representative Wilhelmina Delco (D-Austin).

"This way, we have a two-way street. The regents board has access to student opinion and information, and students have access to board information," she said.

Although only three students testified, more than 30 students from other Texas universities made their presence known. Representatives from Sam Houston, Texas Tech, North Texas and UT-San Antonio were present.

"The students had an overwhelming effect. It seems like they are supporting this issue more now than ever before," said Leon Schydlower, legislative aide to Greenberg.

Because a board of regents makes financial decisions concerning student life, most students in attendance seemed to agree with Representative Steve Ogden (R-Bryan) when he said, "No taxation without representation."

 

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WOMEN'S GROUPS REMEMBER BOSNIANS, CONDEMN RAPES

by Yonca Poyraz-Dogan

News Reporter

Bosnian women are going to be more than remembered on International Women's Day. Many Houston organizations, such as the UH chapter of the National Organization for Women, are recognizing the women of the war-ravaged country.

While the Islamic Society of Greater Houston is organizing a rally supported by several groups, NOW is arranging a speaker forum at UH on Monday, focusing on women in Bosnia.

Laura Robertson, NOW's reproductive freedom task force chair and a junior political science major, said that NOW at UH has considered attending the rally downtown, but the group decided to bring attention here on campus to the Bosnia issue.

"Everyone pretty much knows that the rapes occur in Bosnia. Just to know this is happening is not enough. Something has to be done," Robertson said.

Maria C. Gonzalez, an assistant professor in the English department and a faculty advisor for NOW, has written a letter to UN Secretary Boutros Boutros-Ghali requesting that war-crime suspects in Bosnia be prosecuted.

Gonzalez called everyone to action to support the women in Bosnia, and she said anyone can act by writing letters to the United Nations. "Anywhere in the world where an injustice is occurring and there is not condemnation, then what does that mean?" she asked. "Do we approve of that?"

Although rape is a war crime, it has never been prosecuted at the international level, Gonzalez said. "What we are asking for is that an international tribunal be formed to prosecute systemized rape of women," she said. "People have to call for the U.N. to set up the tribunal."

As many as 60,000 women have been repeatedly raped in former Yugoslavia, said rally coordinator Christine Schardt. The downtown rally, called "Women for Women in Bosnia," hopes to increase public awareness of the abuse, she said.

The rally formally aims to pressure the U.N. to declare rape a war crime, to prosecute vigorously all war criminals and to realize and act for as many as 300 abandoned babies as a result of rapes in former Yugoslavia, Schardt said.

"Women's groups (and) attorneys are looking into international law to find out how women can be compensated for what happened to them," Schardt said.

The idea for the rally was originally conceived by Bosnia Task Force, U.S.A. ISGH started the rally in Houston, Schardt said.

Sponsoring organizations include the Houston Area Women's Center, Dominican Sisters of Houston, Rothko Chapel, Casa Juan Diego, Egyptian American Society, World Prayer Society, American Jewish Committee, American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee, Peace-Links Houston, Wellsprings' Women and Bangladesh Association.

In the speaker forum at UH, NOW will address another international issue, reproductive choice of women, and a local issue, sexual assault on campus, Gonzalez added.

 

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DESIGNERS HOLD 'CHAIR FAIR' FOR AIDS

by Amey Mazurek

Contributing Writer

The Design Industries Foundation For AIDS (DIFFA) is sitting pretty after a successful "Take a Seat" fund-raising auction of chairs Saturday at the Decorative Center on Woodway.

DIFFA raised about $100,000 by both silent and live auction. Two of the chairs designed by 100 local and national artists brought bids of $3500 each.

A variety of creative individual interpretations of "chairs" lined the walls of the lobbies. Some artists wrote personal comments about their own chairs and included them on the same clipboard as the silent auction bid (opening suggestion: $100 each chair).

Etienne Skrabo's chair was painted stark-white, wrapped in large loops of barbed wire with blood-filled sample vials strung randomly; a single blood-filled glass heart centered the piece. "The white chair symbolizes the person who has been drained of his/her lifeblood," Skrabo said in her handwritten statement.

"The barbed wire symbolizes the virus and how 'barbed' it is in the contraction of it."

According to DIFFA Treasurer Bob Bucks, her chair was purchased by a local doctor.

"It stuck out in my mind," Julie Alexander, a bystander, said of Skrabo's chair. She had seen it when DIFFA held a "Meet the Artists" party. The chair's image had stayed with her, "especially the heart," she said.

Bucks said the auction went well, given the changes in the state of the economy.

He indicated that the money will be divided among various AIDS foundations in Houston, depending on which grant requests are honored by DIFFA. The process will take about a month, he said.

"Funds that are brought in are expended as soon as they are in the accounts," Bucks said. "No one's sitting on investment accounts."

Since its inception in 1987, DIFFA has raised more than $2 million. "We've always been proud of the fact that the money comes in at a low cost," Bucks said. "Most of the people working for the event are low cost or volunteers ... Our costs are held within five to eight percent of gross."

At the event itself, small red ribbons adorned many of the more than 1,000 well-dressed art patrons crowding the exquisitely architectured lobbies of the Decorative Center.

Two performance artists called the "Art Guys" offered a unique chair for auction. Visitors to the lucky home where the Art Guys' "chair" will be displayed shouldn't expect to rest easy in it -- unless they can find a way to sit on 143 three-inch-high glass vials full of sawdust and one vial of assorted screws, all framed by wooden shelves.

Art Guy Mike, when asked where he found 144 perfect vials, said, "It's a trade secret."

"They reduce art to it's most basic level," Bucks said.

 

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SMALL TOWN LIFE EXAMINED, OUR TOWN FULL OF SOUL

by Karen Snelling

Daily Cougar Staff

Following Thornton Wilder's instructions, the Alley Theatre presents his 1938 Pulitzer Prize-winning play, Our Town, with minimal props, a nosy but friendly stage manager and a colorful desription of a common town.

Our Town hides a discussion of deep issues, such as insecurity, love and death in its focus on little details found in everyday life.

The all-knowing Stage Manager, played by Bettye Fitzpatrick, tells the story while supplying the audience with statistical facts and personal gossip from the fictitious town of Grover's Corners.

Besides narrating the story, the Stage Manager tells stagehands where to place the scarce furniture and keeps actors and actresses updated on their cues.

Although Our Town is set in New Hampshire from 1901 to 1913, the Stage Manager breaks the time rules and reveals the characters' futures.

She also jumps into the action by becoming different supportive characters.

Yes, the Stage Manager does everything in this play but wash the windows. However, her enthusiastic and concerned nature makes the audience feel welcome.

In the first act, Our Town deals with daily life. The audience meets the play's two central families, the Gibbs and Webbs. Each family is symmetrically correct, containing a hard-working father, a protective mother, a sports-loving son and an inquisitive daughter.

Although many Houstonians won't be able to relate to these families' small-town ways, all will relate to their personal struggles.

Our Town proves that a boy can fall in love with the girl next door. In act two, viewers see George Gibbs (Mark Guin) and Emily Webb (Calista Flockhart) fall in love and get married.

Besides infatuation, these characters express their insecurities when they both beg their parents stop the wedding. It's hard to believe that this boisterous, 17-year-old and goody-goody, 16-year-old could run a family. But they do because people were meant to live two-by-two, according to the Stage Manager.

Act three exhibits Wilder's concept of death. The play suggests the main problem with life is that people become too busy to notice its real beauty. Only after death do people realize what they've missed.

The audience gets a clear idea of Wilder's message at the Alley Theatre.

 

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RAIDERS LOOK TO MAKE NOISE IN SWC

by Jason Ramirez

Daily Cougar Staff

If Red Raiders' coach Larry Hays' is concerned about anything, it is the fact that Texas Tech must build their bullpen and outfield if they hope to have any chance of competing in 1993.

"They are a big concern for us," Hays said. "We really need these guys to come around for this team this year."

The Raiders, however, have gotten off to an impressive 11-2 start. Texas Tech has the best batting average (.381) in the Southwest Conference, and that has helped them win without using their bullpen.

But the Red Raiders' opposition has been nothing to write home about.

Of their nine victories, four have come at the hands of Cameron College and four against Howard Payne College.

"We are hoping to get in some more games under our belts," Hays said. "Since we started late, we are way behind."

Nevertheless, Tech remains confident about the '93 season as it opens conference play against the Baylor Bears at 7 p.m. tonight.

Junior outfielder Mike Kinney leads the conference with an overall .559 batting average and is among the league leaders in stolen bases (12), and triples (3).

On the pitching side, ace John Macatee and Travis Drikill have been impressive. Macatee is sixth in the SWC in strike outs with 24.

Though they're on the right track, it may not be enough for the Raiders this season because of the competition in the SWC, which includes top-ranked Texas.

However, if Tech's starting pitching holds up the rest of the way, the Red Raiders may not need their bullpen to make some noise in the SWC.

 

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