Campus news from across the nation shows theft, suits and ... communes?

Compiled by Jim Parsons


Editor's note: This semester, the editorial staff of The Daily Cougar has decided to print a sampling of news from other colleges and universities around the nation every Tuesday.

Though these stories come from all corners of the United States, they often deal with subjects relevant to matters here at the University of Houston or of interest to students anywhere.

Stories in the College News Roundup come from wire services as well as various colleges' student newspapers.

Study suggests balance in research and teaching

SYRACUSE, N.Y. - A recent study conducted by Syracuse University's Center for Instructional Development suggests that the importance of teaching is growing in the minds of many professors.

According to the study, the trend that has been keeping professors out of the classroom and in research laboratories has shifted.

The center found in a 1991 survey of administrators and professors at 49 institutions that 73 percent of them favored research over teaching. But the latest numbers indicate that figure has dropped to 49 percent.

Robert Diamond, who directed the center when the study was conducted, said while universities don't necessarily value teaching over research, they are moving toward a balance between the two.

- College Press Service

Veterinary student sues over required dissection

LOA ALTOS HILLS, Calif. - Beate Broese-Quinn wants to become a veterinarian. She just doesn't want to dissect animals along the way.

Wire reports say Broese-Quinn has sued Foothill-DeAnza Community College and a biology professor whose class requirements included the dissection of a fetal pig.

"The instructor clearly outlined what the students had to do," said Paul Fong, a college trustee. "To make an exception for one particular student that deviated from his policy would be catastrophic for him as an instructor," Fong added.

Bruce Wagner, Broese-Quinn's attorney, claims his client has a "moral and ethical belief" against killing animals for research and that the college violated her rights to free speech and due process.

Broese-Quinn is suing for an unspecified amount in emotional damages. Wagner said she had straight A's before failing the biology class.

- College Press Service

Hard to find good help at Arizona State these days

TEMPE, Ariz. - A crime-prevention coordinator at Arizona State University before the Christmas holidays was arrested and charged with burglary.

Radawna Michelle was arrested after campus police said she entered Wilson Hall on the ASU campus one evening and emerged with a backpack. She escaped by bicycle and was arrested in her office. Police found $7 in cash and several CDs in the backpack.

"She was a great employee and tireless worker," said Amanda Kingsbury of the ASU news bureau.

Michelle had been employed as the school's crime-prevention coordinator for three years and had introduced several new safety measures to the 50,000-student campus, including altering buildings' surroundings with better lighting and fewer window obstructions to make them safer.

Kingsbury said Michelle is now a suspect in several other unsolved burglaries.

- College Press Service

Students leave dorms in favor of life in the rough

DAVIS, Calif. - Twenty-eight University of California-Davis students eschewed living in residence halls and took up residence in "the Domes," a collection of 14 half-circle fiberglass shells surrounded by garden space.

Not your typical dorm room.

But nor are the students your typical collegians: instead, they must tend the grounds, learn how to can vegetables and shower using solar power.

"For me, it's a release," said Russ Watts, a UC-Davis grad student who lives in the Domes. "I need to get outside. There's trees. There's gardens. There's chickens. This provides lots of study breaks."

UC-Davis isn't the only college where students can opt for non-traditional housing. At Denison University in Granville, Ohio, 12 students each year live in cabins with no electricity or running water.

Meanwhile, at Humboldt State University in California, students can stay in the Campus Center of Appropriate Technology, a house that runs on solar power and recycles shower and sink water for use on the lawns and gardens.

CCAT residents spend part of the year teaching workshops on topics like gardening, massage, bicycle maintenance and sustainable living techniques.

Denison's "Homestead" buildings are located on the edge of a wood about a mile from campus. "It's quiet at night and you just sleep," said Katie Rowe, who has lived in Homestead for three years. "It's amazing."

Homestead cabins do not have televisions, phones or flush toilets. Solar panels provide electricity for lights and appliances, but residents must pump their own water and chop wood for heat.

"It's a change in comfort levels," Rowe said. "You're ridding yourself of needs."

"The demands can be hard on your personal time," Watts said. "It's not to say it's utopia in any way."

He did rave about the compost Domes residents enjoy when their kitchen waste is eaten by worms. "It's incredible - if you get into holding dirt in your hands, which a lot of people out here do," he said.

- Colleen De Baise, College Press Service

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