Posts Tagged ‘UW’

UW to buy spot on Univ. Square

January 25, 2010

It looks like the multi-layered sports-bar monstrosity, whose absence breaks Ald. Bryon Eagon’s heart everyday, did not die in vain. The university has announced plans to purchase the land the restaurant would have been on. The McBurney Disabilities Resource Center and the Office of Admissions will set up shop there.

In my phone conversation with Eagon, the alder was glad that the land is going to be used for something, but expressed sadness at the multi-age entertainment facility that could have been. As I pointed out to him, Segredo’s, the “boutique bowling bar” which recently replaced Mad Ave, has very much the same schtick, and would likely have never existed had the Univ. Square bar worked out.

Listen to the Sconz on the radio!

January 19, 2010

Turn your dial to 91.7 and tune into some political discussion featuring yours truly, Dave Black and DJ C+ (Clifton Earl) tomorrow between 4 and 5 p.m on WSUM.

This is your chance to hear the serenading voice of reason through your headphones, which is the only way to get you damn kids to listen these days!

Any topics I should bring up?

Ditch the University Bookstore

January 16, 2010

Tomorrow is the last chance to participate in the ASM book swap. Drop your books off at Gordon Commons, Room A2 between 10:30 and 3 p.m.

But even if that doesn’t work out, and you haven’t already bought your books online, and you’ve resigned yourself to being ruthlessly ripped off yet again, consider spending your money somewhere besides the University Bookstore. Many people don’t know that there are multiple stores in Madison that sell textbooks, and many of them have much more to offer than over-priced books and Bucky apparel.

I’m not talking about the Underground Textbook Exchange. As far as I know (and that’s not much) that place only exists to keep the University Bookstore honest. The price difference is rarely more than a matter of cents, and the store doesn’t offer anything interesting in addition.

I would encourage you to check out one of the independent bookstores. If for no better reason than to talk to people who will have some (or at least claim to have some) wild stories about the Madison of yore. That’s one of the benefits of visiting a store that sells a product which interests nobody below the age of 40.

Room of One’s Own Feminist Bookstore and the Rainbow Books Co-Op are such places. The feminist/leftist buzzwords can cause nausea after too long a time, but both places offer pieces of history and culture that make places like Madison interesting.

Those are two places to go for textbooks; there are still more places to go for literature or humanities courses. Much of your required reading for liberal arts courses can be found at Paul’s, Avol’s or Browzers. Of course, that’s only if you insist on spending money. Memorial Library has still more.

UW ranked a best buy

January 4, 2010

Todd Finkelmeyer, who I realize has started to update the Cap Times higher ed blog, brought this piece of good news to the UW community:

The University of Wisconsin-Madison is ranked as one of the best values in public education according to Kiplinger’s Personal Finance.

For in-state students, UW-Madison ranked 14th on the website’s list of the “100 Best Values in Public Colleges for 2010.” It is the highest-ranked Big Ten Conference institution.

UW-Madison is ranked 15th for out-of-state students.

Any money on the first legislator to put out a press release lauding the recognition as evidence that no more public money is needed for UW? As Finkelmeyer points out, awards are exploited to send the university in the opposite direction.
But in the future, don’t be stunned if rankings like these are used by cash-strapped administrators to argue that tuition at Wisconsin’s flagship university is too low.

UW animal welfare investigation: Questions arise

January 3, 2010

Sifting and Winnowing:

Yesterday, January 1, 2010, the Wisconsin State Journal reported that UW-Madison has been cited for conditions found to be in violation of federal regulations governing animal research laboratories.  The citations followed from a surprise visit by federal inspectors sometime in December.

Why is this news relevant to the Graduate School restructuring plan?  Because the threat of exactly such citations and the risk of substantial fines or even loss of accreditation have been central to the provost’s case for the restructuring. That we have not yet seen a clear explanation of how splitting up the Graduate School solves this particular problem is beside the point.

Seen in this light, the timing is interesting.   The inspection by the Ofice of Laboratory Animal Welfare (OLAW) appears not to have been random but rather was likely undertaken in response to “allegations involving animal welfare brought to [OLAW’s] attention.”    We do not know who made the allegations.

It’s good to see these kinds of questions asked by bloggers. It’s this kind of analysis that is increasingly neglected by the impoverished local media.

Wiscmail still sucks

December 26, 2009

As I’m sure many of you have found out, UW took advantage of the break and implemented a new email system. The old one was bad in every way. It was slow, had very little space and was very difficult to navigate. Anybody who didn’t realize how incredibly backwards it was had not tried gmail.

The new version is possibly just as bad. It doesn’t load any faster and it seems to take up a lot of energy when it is loading. My computer has frozen twice already while it’s been loading.

Any thoughts? I don’t expect too many responses –– the numbers have indicated that many of you take Boxing Day way too seriously to spend time checking blogs. But if you are one of those people not celebrating the traditional holiday of the servants by eating cold cuts (wikipedia link above), please comment!

Could we have “smart furloughs”?

December 23, 2009

Should state employees who are paid by private or federal funds be required to take a furlough like everybody else in state government? Many UW employees, especially scientific researchers who are paid largely by federal grant money, feel the furlough is unjust. What does happen to those federal dollars they don’t collect on those days? Does the state siphon it off?

Sifting and Winnowing discusses “Smart Furloughs,” proposed by State Rep. Kelda Helen Roys, which would exempt state employees who are paid with state AND federal funds from the mandatory vacations.

Roys’ proposal seems to big. Would it require any employee who receives ANY federal money from taking the furlough? There’s so much federal money in all aspects of state government (especially education) that thousands of employees could find ways to avoid the furloughs.

Actually, people with allergies can watch sports

December 18, 2009

The University is touting two “allergy friendly sporting events” next month – a women’s basketball game and a women’s hockey game. Does this mean that football games will eventually be “allergy friendly”?

The women’s basketball game on Sunday, Jan. 10 vs. Michigan at 1 p.m. and the women’s hockey game vs. Bemidji State on Sunday, Feb. 7 at 2 p.m. will be designated as “Allergy Friendly” games. For these two first-ever events, a number of special accommodations will be put in place to allow families with food allergies to enjoy a Badger game.

In consultation with the Food Allergy Association of Wisconsin, all concession stands at the Kohl Center will remove food items that could induce an allergic reaction including: shelled and un-shelled peanuts, candy with nuts, caramel corn with nuts and ice cream with nut products.

Correction: A number of special accommodations will be put in place to allow families with food allergies to enjoy food at a Badgers game. Because believe it or not, not all people need snacks to enjoy sporting events.

Or is there something I’m missing? Help me allergy experts.

Coastie Song hits New York Times

December 16, 2009

Thanks to Eric Eagon for pointing this out to me:

While the song has launched their music career, it’s done a great deal more on the 42,000-student campus. It’s raised complaints of anti-Semitism, shed more light on a cultural divide among students and renewed complaints about a long-standing housing policy.

How did the New York Times scoop this one? Is this your doing Bassey?

SLAC to give Biddy Martin workers rights “report card”

December 11, 2009

The Student Labor Action Coalition will be giving Biddy Martin a “final exam” in workers rights and then grading it and presenting the chancellor a giant “report card” based on her performance, according to Jan Van Tol, member of the SLAC.

SLAC has also put the exam on its website.

At the moment I am awaiting a response from Van Tol on whether or not the chancellor has already agreed to take the “test.”