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Volume 68, Issue 152, Monday, June 30, 2003


UH builds Cougar pride

By Bridget Brown
The Daily Cougar

What makes a great University is even greater traditions, and Texas students do it bigger and better. The Aggies have Bonfire, the 12th Man and Midnight Yell (just to name a few of the hundreds). Longhorns take pride in the University of Texas tower lighting, Hex Rally and "Eyes of Texas." UH is of course home to Frontier Fiesta and the Cougar Kickoff.

In an attempt to promote the somewhat lacking campus life at UH, the University has decided to look toward the promoters of Frontier Fiesta -- the Greek organizations -- to enhance Cougar spirit by building the new Greek Park Community, which boasts 15 customized (12-, 14- and 20-bed) townhomes.

The Greek Park Community, to be located on Calhoun Street and Cullen Boulevard, will be open to all student organizations.
Mauro Alvarez/The Daily Cougar

"Greek organizations are the biggest participants in activities and add a lot to the undergraduate living on campus," Vice President of Student Affairs Elwyn C. Lee said. "It is known that the more students you have on campus the more vibrance a campus life will have."

Located at the corner of Calhoun Street and Cullen Boulevard, The Greek Park Community is not exclusively for fraternities and sororities, but is open to all student organizations that want to reside together in a close-knit society. So far Greeks are the lease signers. This could be based loosely on the hefty $4,000 deposit (based on a 20-bedroom townhome) required to reserve a unit. The community also has a 255-bed residence hall, complete with a large clock tower, where unaffiliated students may live.

"We feel it will enhance the life of campus, and we hope to see members of the organizations meeting with the members of the regular community and doing things together," Associate Vice President of Student Affairs Diane Murphy said.

The hall will serve as a focal point of the community providing amenities such as a fitness center, game room, computer lab and a social lounge. Lee said he hopes the clock tower will be the first new tradition to come out of the project.

"We are trying to make a landmark on campus," Lee said. "The clock tower has the ability to play music, and hopefully this will become a sort of new tradition. It is part of making campus life memorable. We try to make good alumni."

Bayou Oaks owns the community, but Lee said that because so many "involved" students will be living in close quarters the University will step in to assure that "good natured competitions and pranks" between the organizations do not get out of hand. Each townhouse will elect a member for a Greek council to have discussions and mediations.

"We want kids to have fun and we expect there to be social activities and a lot of spirit, but we will be close at hand seven days a week," Lee said.

The grand opening of the complex is Aug. 15, just in time for the fall semester.

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