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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Feb. 16, 2001)
February 16,2001 #
Volume 100 #
Issue 109 m
dailyneb.com # j
Since 1901 ^
| CFA increases Nebraska
Unions’ budget by more than
1 In News/7 :
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wants to send Us seniors
Trapped in a world of
other voices, Nena St
Louis found a way out
Three-fourths of UNUs aca
demic programs weren't identi
fied as priorities.
And at an open forum held
Thursday, some faculty mem
bers defended their depart
ments and criticized the priori
tization process, while others
The list of 102 priorities,
released Jan. 29, is defined as the
top quarter of the University of
Please see FORUM on 7
Professors defend their programs
Entomology Professor David
Keith has worked at UNL for 33
During that time, Keith said
he has seen the entomology
department flourish with strong
students, awards, grants and
Keith said he thought the
program was one of the best in
the country, which is reflective of
the hard work by students and
Faculty members recently
developed a distance education
masters program in entomology
on their own time, he said.
But when Keith saw the list of
UNL's 102 academic priorities,
he didn’t see entomology.
“That’s demoralizing to
younger faculty,” Keith said.
The top 25 percent of UNL's
uYou don’t remake a
university overnight -
this has to be be for
the long term.”
UNL interim chancellor
academic priorities were identi
fied in an effort to strengthen
programs and help the universi
ty gain national recognition.
Interim Chancellor Harvey
Perlman emphasized that priori
tization wasn’t reallocation.
"I don't think programs that
are creative and significant have
anything to fear from this list,”
“You don’t remake a univer
sity overnight - this has to be for
the long term.”
The priorities are broken
into four categories:
tion and research/creative activ
ity; life sciences; health and nat
ural resources and undergradu
ate education and outreach.
The life sciences, health and
natural resources category lists
13 programs as priorities.
The programs cross the tra
ditional departmental and col
lege boundaries and involve sev
For example, bioengineering
involves the Institute of
Agriculture and Natural
Resources, the College of Arts
and Sciences, the College of
Engineering and Technology
and the University of Nebraska
Other programs included in
the life sciences category are:
■Ecology and Evolutionary
■Food Safety Program.
■ Functional Genomics.
■Nebraska Center for
■ Sociology of Health.
Conservation and Protection.
Stephen Taylor, department
head and professor of food sci
ence and technology, said he
thought the list of priorities was
“With 102 priorities, it’s too
large, especially when it comes
down to the resources,” he said.
Rodger Johnson, animal sci
ence professor, said he thought
some of the areas were defined
For example, his department
of animal science was included
under biotechnology and
But other priorities were
defined much more specifically,
such as Spanish, Film Studies
and French Language and
“Now it appears in retrospect
we erred because not everyone
else played by the same rules,*
Perlman said the list of prior
ities is still tentative and can be
“This should not be regarded
as an event, but as a process,” he
ASUN No Bull party Presidential Candidate Andy Mixan addresses the crowd at Thursday's debate. The five presidential candidates include: from left, John Matzen,an independent candidate, Mixan,
Jaron Luttkh with The One Party, Nathan Fuerst with Score! and Angela Clements with NUForce.
ASUN debate centers on controversial issues
BY SHARON KOLBET
The questions were pointed, the
Thursday night, candidates for
the Association of Students at the
University of Nebraska participated
in the second of three scheduled
In the forum moderated by the
Daily Nebraskan, the five presidential
candidates and two second vice
presidential candidates spoke their
minds on controversial issues.
The first question posed to the
presidential-candidates asked how
they felt about the way ASUN han
dled the debate concerning fetal-tis
sue research at the University of
Nebraska Medical Center. The candi
dates were asked how they would
approach this issue if elected.
“We are trying to restore
some legitimacy to
No Bull presidential candidate
Jaron Luttich, presidential candi
date for The One Party, said he agreed
with ASUN’s involvement in the
issue. But if elected, he said he would
make sure the student body was more
aware of the issues being voted on by
No Bull presidential candidate
Andy Mixan said the actions taken by
last year's student government put a
strain on their relationship with the
student body. He was against ASUN
continuing to be involved in the
debate over the research.
“We are trying to restore some
legitimacy to ASUN,” Mixan said.
John Matzen, the independent
presidential candidate, said if elected
and asked to take a stance on the
fetal-tissue issue, he would have to
decline. He said he thought the ASUN
president should not take a side if he
were going against the wishes of half
of the student body.
Angela Clements, NUForce presi
dential candidate, said it was impor
tant for the student government to be
involved in the issues, but she dis
agreed with the procedures used by
last year’s ASUN in addressing the
fetal tissue debate. Clements said if
elected, her party would start an
ASUN newsletter and Web site to
keep students informed of controver
Score! candidate Nathan Fuerst
said ASUN couldn’t hide from divisive
“As soon as you say you are going
to stay away from the issues, you are
staying away from the students,”
A second question posed to the
presidential candidates asked them
to express their views on Initiative
416, LB19 and UNL’s decision to bar
same-sex partners from receiving
No Bull candidate Mixan said
ASUN should not have taken a stand
on proposition 416.
Matzen, Clements, Fuerst and
Please see DEBATE on 3
911 emergency center overcomes temporary outage
BY JILL CONNER
After a night of silence in the 911
emergency communication center,
authorities found out how the emer
gency system can fail.
About 12:30 a.m. Thursday, a
problem with the phone lines shut
down 25 emergency and nonemer
gency lines running into the Hall of
Justice at 555 S. 10th St., where the 911
emergency center is located.
Only those who called neighbor
hood hotline numbers heard a voice
on the other end of the line.
Others were told all circuits were
busy or heard a busy signal said 911
Center Manager Julie Righter.
Leo Perreault, market area presi
dent for Alltel, said the breakdown
was caused by a leak that created
moisture on the main line feeding
into the building.
Perreault said alarms did not noti
fy Alltel of the problem until after the
police department realized it was not
“We did not take this lightly,"
Perreault said by about 4 a.m.,
Alltel had rerouted the calls to three
lines in the Lancaster County Sheriff’s
office that were still working.
At about 10:00 a.m. Thursday
morning, Righter said 23 of the 25
lines were working.
Perreault said Alltel used a chemi
cal compound to dry out the lines.
Because Alltel was not alarmed of
the leak in time, Perreault said the
incident was still under investigation.
Lincoln Police Chief Tom Casady
said he was surprised by the outage.
“I was dialing numbers like crazy
looking for a busy signal or a ring,” he
Casady said although some calls
were missed during the six- hour
breakdown, the outage occurred at a
time of night when fewer calls are
“I am not aware of any serious
incidents that happened because of
the loss," he said.
The department only answered 33
emergency calls, almost half of what
is normally received, he said.
To minimize damage caused by
the outage, the city put into effect a
contingency plan it had created to
prepare for Y2K, said Deputy Sheriff
Jarrett said the possibility of a 911
breakdown was discussed extensively
when the city planned for Y2K.
The plan called for cooperation of
the city and county police depart
ments as well as volunteers.
Jarrett said through cooperation
Please see 911 on 7
■ Sheldon Schuster displayed excitement while
presenting his plan to improve UNL's research
program to faculty members.
Sheldon Schuster, candidate for UNL’s top
research position, doesn’t like to use a micro
“I’m not formal - not when I teach and not
when I lecture,” he said to a group of faculty mem
Schuster, director of the University of Florida’s
Biotechnology Program since 1992, isn’t a stranger
He worked at the University of Nebraska
Lincoln as an assistant professor of chemistry and
life sciences from 1976-81, an associate professor
of chemistry and biological sciences from 1981-85
and a professor of chemistry and biological sci
ences from 1986-88.
Schuster joined the University of Florida,
located in Gainesville, in 1989 as director of the
Interdisciplinary Center for Biotechnology
During his speech, Schuster joked with faculty
members - several of whom he had worked with
earlier in his career.
Ana sometimes, bcnuster would stop mid-sen
tence to walk across the room and to greet and
shake the hand of a former colleague.
Despite his jokes, Schuster said he’s serious
about the future of research at UNL.
The vice chancellor for research is the chief
research officer for the campus and will play a
major role in implementing the 20/20 report,
which outlines UNL’s research and undergraduate
education goals for the next 20 years.
Schuster said the university needed to be con
gratulated for formulating the 20/20 report.
“I’m not sure there’s any other university in the
nation that's done this,” he said.
Schuster said he was impressed with the report
and UNL, but he also said the university needed to
make several improvements in its research.
Schuster said he was surprised UNL didn’t
have an advisory board to the vice chancellor for
research, and said it was something he’d change if
selected for the job.
The committee wouldn’t consist of depart
ment chairs or any other higher-up faculty mem
bers, he said.
Rather, professors who are “young enough and
free enough in their scientific learning” would be
tapped as consultants.
Schuster said UNL needed to improve its rela
tionship with private businesses to enhance
Partnering up with businesses is often less
expensive than doing research independently, he
“This institution has a phenomenal opportu
nity to become the technological engine of the
Midwest, and I think it can be done," he said.
Schuster, who referred to himself as a “real sci
ence junkie” said his primary focus wouldn’t be to
simply bring more research dollars to UNL.
“I can’t promise money, but I can promise pas
sion,” he said. “If you want to make good money,
forget technology and sell Beanie Babies.”
Schuster said he thought the university needed
to pursue “good science” to become a top research
Please see RESEARCH on 7
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