The University of Chicago
The University of Chicago|
|UC Campus News|
by The Chicago MaroonJun 01, 2009
“May 18, 4:40 p.m.
A man in his 20s was approached by three unknown men on the 5400 block of South Dorchester Avenue when one of the men struck the victim, knocking him to the ground. The offenders then took his property and fled. The first offender was described as black and approximately 18 years of age; the second offender was described as black and 14 to 17 years of age. No description was provided for the third offender.
May 19, 5:33 p.m.
A 30-year-old man walking on the 6300 block of South Ingleside Avenue when he was punched in the head by two men from behind. After retrieving the victim’s cell phone, both offenders ran southward on Ingleside. A male bystander who witnessed the robbery chased both offenders and took back the cell phone, later returning it to the victim. The offenders were described as black, 16 to 18 years old, and 5-feet-7-inches.”
by The Chicago MaroonJun 02, 2009
“A veteran balloon sculpting crew, led by fourth-year Willy Chyr, took over the BSLC this weekend, leaving behind a four-story-tall helix of twinkling pink and yellow balloons. The mix of birthday party balloons and LED lights hanging from the building's winding staircase is the second glowing balloon ”balluminescent” sculpture Chyr and his team made this year.
The sculpture, which Chyr explained was inspired by neurons, may not look like brain matter to some people, he said. “It is what it is,” the biology-turned-physics major said. The spiraling structure is flanked by balloon creatures resembling dragonflies. “I tried to [create] a whole world,” Chyr said.
The BSLC was the perfect home for the suspended neuron-like structures, for more reason than simply their shared subject matter. “[I wanted] to use the architecture that the space offers,” Chyr said, “to take advantage of the height.”
Chyr began making balloon sculptures during his second year at the U of C when he heard that Summer Breeze, the annual spring carnival on the Quads, needed a balloon artist and would pay $30 an hour. Chyr took the job, but didn’t mention he had never twisted balloons before. “The first few [customers] were forgiving,” he said, remembering that first day.
After attending a talk by architect James Carpenter, who is known for his use of space and light, Chyr came up with the idea of adding lights to the balloon sculpture.
“With the balloons you can change the way you see light,” Chyr said, adding that he was particularly struck by the different hues of yellow he could create with the light.
The work began Friday at 4 p.m. and continued throughout the weekend, late into Sunday night. Chyr said that about 600 to 700 balloons were used in the sculpture, which was partially funded by the University of Chicago Arts Council. When funding ran short, he did what any balloon sculptor would do. “I had to work at birthday parties to fund it,” he said.
The balloons can last up to two weeks and the sculpture will hang into finals week.”
by The Chicago MaroonJun 02, 2009
“After Barack Obama settled on a Portuguese water dog for the White House pet, demand for the dog skyrocketed. When Michelle donned a J.Crew outfit, it sold out in stores almost instantaneously. And after an unaired 2001 episode of the amateur food-critic television show Check, Please! featured the president’s rave review of the restaurant’s affordably-priced Southern cuisine was released on YouTube, the restaurant received national attention and an influx of customers.
But Obama's glowing review—and 15 years worth of loyal diners—isn't enough to rescue Dixie Kitchen, whose owner Carol Andresen said that moving the restaurant out of Harper Court to another location in Hyde Park isn’t financially feasible. The restaurant will close at the end of the day June 7.
The University and the city of Chicago are moving forward with plans for the redevelopment of Harper Court in an effort to revitalize retail in Hyde Park and attract neighborhood residents and visitors from outside of Hyde Park alike.
The University worked with the owners to help them look for new locations in Hyde Park, but Andresen said finding an appropriately sized space that included parking in Hyde Park was unlikely. Relocation would also be expensive, she said. Between moving and buying new equipment, she estimated that costs would run between $700,000 and $1 million.
Ricardo Lopez and his wife Linda live in northwestern Indiana, a 45-minute drive from Hyde Park. They eat at the restaurant regularly when they come to the neighborhood to visit Ricardo’s mother.
“It's worth the trip. We're going to miss it,” said Ricardo. “The neighborhood, and obviously the food, is certainly worth coming for,” he added.
Ricardo said he will continue to enjoy dining at Hyde Park, at restaurants like Calypso Cafe and Chant, but hopes that the new development at Harper Court will “keep the flavor of Hyde Park.”
Andresen has assuaged fears from diners worried about not getting to eat their favorite Dixie Kitchen dishes in Hyde Park by promising to add some customer favorites to the menu at Calypso Cafe, another of her restaurants that serves primarily Caribbean cuisine.
She plans to keep Calypso Cafe open until its lease expires in June 2012. The University, which is working with the city of Chicago to redevelop the site, plans to continue developing Harper Court, and estimates that it may begin 24 months after a developer is chosen, as early as this fall. According to that estimate, development would begin in the fall of 2011.
Currently, a shortlist of five proposals—from the development firms Joseph Freed and Associates, McCaffery Interests/Taxman Corporation, Mesa Development/Walsh, Metropolitan Properties, and Vermillion Development—are being reviewed. The development will include a mix of commercial and mixed-income housing, and proposals including a late-night diner, the Gap, and local independent retailers are under consideration.
The redevelopment may bring more dining to Hyde Park, but until then, Dixie Kitchen patrons say they will frequent Calypso Cafe, Obama-favorite Valois, and newcomer hotspots Chant and Park 52, which is also in Harper Court but will remain in the complex.
Popular dishes at Dixie Kitchen include Obama’s favorites, the peach cobbler and the Southern Sampler, as well as blackened catfish and fried green tomatoes.
Dixie Kitchen opened in 1994, when Andresen and her husband Paul, both from Minnesota, decided to open a restaurant that catered to the diversity of the neighborhood. The bait-shop decor and hearty Cajun cuisine attracted Hyde Park and South Side residents living in an area with a notable shortage of sit-down restaurants.
Andresen has since opened Dixie Kitchen restaurants in Evanston and Lansing. Many regulars said they will get their Dixie Kitchen fix by driving to the other sites.
Manager Walter Butler said the restaurant has lately seen a significant uptick in business, as new patrons and regulars come to the restaurant. Lately, the wait for a table has stretched upwards of two hours. Some of the most successful businesses in Hyde Park have been those that appeal to both the college community and South Side residents, a combination Dixie Kitchen fostered.
Hyde Parker Vida Cornelious said she was disappointed to see the restaurant go. “It seems to be a watering-hole for University of Chicago professors and people in the community,” she said.
“It’s a neighborhood staple, really a great restaurant, a great alternative when you want a substantial but cost-effective meal,” she said.”
by The Chicago MaroonSep 11, 2009
“Two Cabinet officials called for universities to follow U of C models and invest more resources to reforming urban health care and education, at a University-sponsored forum Thursday.
The Washington D.C. event, hosted by President Robert Zimmer, featured keynotes by Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan (LAB ’83).
Countering the stereotype that the University advances theory at the expense of practical knowledge, Duncan applauded the U of C’s role in education research.
“The fact is, you’re not an ivory tower in the middle of the city, but you’re running some of the best charter schools in the city, and arguably, the country,” Duncan said to a crowd of mostly University alumni. “You’re not just thinking theoretically about the problem, but you’re putting your resources on the line.
Sebelius, who started off the event, outlined many of President Obama’s concerns about the nation’s health care system, echoing his remarks the night before to a joint session of Congress. The country is facing rising health care costs, she said, but often receives only third-world care.
Sebelius moved past the upcoming legislative battle, and asked universities to focus their efforts on how the system can be realistically reformed once a bill is passed. “Then the real work begins,” she said. “And we want to tap your expertise as we change the way we deliver health care.”
A panel of five health care professionals, including Medical Center associate dean of community-based research Eric Whitaker (MD ’93), then discussed the problems with implementing that change.
The panel came back to community-based primary care models, like the University’s Urban Health Initiative (UHI), which directs Medical Center patients to local clinics and community hospitals to receive long-term primary care. While critics have claimed this turns away poorer patients, the panelists said plans like the UHI are what the health care system needs.
“We can put extra [beds] in medical centers,” said Kavita Patel, a White House policy director, “but we need to shift gears to a community-based model.”
All of the panelists agreed that advancing technologies aren’t any good against the basic problems many neighborhoods face, such as little to no fresh produce or public parks.
“We have to change…how we improve the health of the community, beyond building more clinics and hospitals,” Whitaker said, adding the University has invested in local farmer’s markets.
Whitaker also explained why universities shouldn’t strive to compete with public hospitals in providing primary care.
“Since 1986, six hospitals closed in Chicago because the University of Chicago out-competed them,” drawing too many patients to the University, he said.
The key for better health care, he said, is for high-tech hospitals to play to their strengths, while allowing community clinics to play to theirs.
“They do general care and we reserve ourselves for tertiary and quaternary care with a smattering of general care,” he said. “Not to make a Republican argument, but cooperation can be more powerful than competition.”
Duncan then gave the second keynote, recounting statistics showing the U.S. as one of the worst academically performing developed nations. He pushed for work like the U of C’s Urban Education Institute (UEI), which both runs K-12 charter schools and researches the impact of education policy.
“We need more of your willingness to roll up your sleeves, put your resources on the line, and invest in historically underserved communities.”
Another panel, this time of education experts, agreed that more universities should be more involved in improving education in the worst performing schools.
“The tradition has been for higher education to tinker around the edges of the hardest nuts,” Stanford education professor Linda Darling-Hammond said, “but fundamentally not have accountability for how the school performs in the long term. There are lots of escape hatches and they’ve been taken.”
UEI director Tim Knowles said the University has stressed the importance of a hands-on approach to education reform since John Dewey founded the Laboratory Schools in 1896.
“He taught the world that children learn by doing. If universities are to stay vital and not become obsolete in K-12 education, they need to learn by doing,” Knowles said. “We need to actually experience the difficulty of running a successful school.”
by The Chicago MaroonSep 18, 2009
“A glossy new member of the University of Chicago community greeted the class of 2013 Sunday when the recently completed South Campus Residence Hall (SCRH) opened its doors to incoming students. Adjacent to Burton-Judson Courts between East 60th and 61st Streets on Ellis Avenue, the dorm is the most recent—and visible—sign of the University’s commitment to building a South Campus community.
In spite of the airy design afforded by the structure’s liberal use of glass, many of the SCRH’s features aren’t visible from the outside. The building’s novel components include a two-story reading room, internal house staircases, and a sit-down café and convenience store.
The sheer size of the SCRH sets it apart as well, edging out Max Palevsky as the largest dorm on campus. Katie Callow-Wright, director of undergraduate housing, sees the concentration of students south of the Midway as an opportunity.
“One block with 1,100 students is a critical mass,” she said, adding residents from SCRH and Burton-Judson together. “It’s going to give that block a completely different feel.”
The dorm will retain the administrative placeholder name that was used last year. When the dorm was announced, officials planned on naming the building after a major donor, or perhaps a famous University professor or founder. Yet, the dorm will remain the SCRH for the foreseeable future. “There are no plans to change the name at this time,” Callow-Wright said.
Of the 811 students living in the SCRH, Callow-Wright said just over half will live in doubles, about a third in singles, and little over a sixth in apartments. Over half of the residents will be first-years, leaving most of the coveted singles and apartments for upperclassmen.
The sleek, contemporary style of the building is in stark contrast with the ubiquitous neo-gothic architecture of the U of C’s quad. The dominant use of glass in the SCRH gives the building an inviting atmosphere compared to the more closed, castle-like Burton-Judson residence hall, Callow-Wright said.
“The transparency and openness is not just so that you can see from the outside that there’s a vibrancy, that it’s a social hub, but also so that if you’re on the second floor or the fifth floor, you can look into the courtyard and see that there’s a social life all around you. The transparency breaks it down to a human scale,” she said.
While it might seem paradoxical that the largest dormitory on campus would be conducive to a tight-knit community, Callow-Wright said there has been a commitment to house and dorm identity from the outset, expressed through such elements as the distinctive color schemes and finishes on the furniture.
“Our goal is to make students feel that they’re part of a community,” Callow-Wright said. “We want to make sure that when you travel throughout the building you can tell that you’ve left one house and gone into another.”
The SCRH is adjacent to a new dining hall, which connects to Burton-Judson’s now-refurbished eating area. Director of Operations and Communications for Housing and Dining Services Richard Mason said the space complements, rather than undercuts, the contemporary architecture next door. “We’ve been sure to maintain the character of those two Burton-Judson dining rooms,” Mason said.
The biggest novelty for South Campus diners will likely be the café and convenience store opening at the northwest corner of the residence hall. With seating for 90, and hours from 7 a.m. to 3 a.m., Mason said the store “melds the Maroon Market and the C-Shop, but with more of a barista-coffee concept.”
Callow-Wright emphasized that the café is not just an asset for SCRH residents. “Anybody from the neighborhood who wants a cup of coffee can come there. It will be an important amenity to students, staff, community, and neighbors,” she said.
The SCRH replaces the now-defunct Shoreland Hall, located to the east of main campus at South Shore Drive. Around 340 of the Shoreland’s more than 600 residents will be moving to the new dorm, according to Callow-Wright.
“I lived in the Shoreland myself for nine years,” she said. “I was sad for a long time about leaving, but I think that what brings buildings to life are the University of Chicago students who live in them, and they are what make our community such an interesting place to live in.
The House that Stephen A. Douglas built: New house names
While “South Campus Residence Hall” is one of the more descriptive building names on campus, there’s no hidden meaning behind the mouthful. Each of the dorm’s eight houses, on the other hand, has a name and a story. Five were named for University trustees and long-term donors, all financiers, and three are named for people and places important to U of C history.
Oakenwald House is named after an estate owned by Illinois Senator Stephen A. Douglas. He donated 10 acres of the estate, located near East 35th Street and South Cottage Grove Avenue, to help create the first University of Chicago, a Baptist school, founded in 1857. That institution closed in 1886, but the alumni of that university raised $30,000 to create the new University of Chicago in Hyde Park in 1891.
Chautauqua House is named after a school located in western New York. University founder William Rainey Harper, of Library fame, taught there for many years, and shared Chautauqua’s goal of democratized higher education.
Kenwood House is named after the neighborhood north of Hyde Park. Many people important to the University’s founding lived in Kenwood, including Harold Swift, Julius Rosenwald, and Martin Ryerson.
Wendt House is named for trustee Gregory D. Wendt (A.B. ’83), senior vice president of Capital Research and Management Company. He and his wife Lisa established several scholarships and have donated to the U of C’s Odyssey Scholarship fund.
Jannotta House is named for former trustee Edgar Jannotta, who was trustee chair from 1984-1999. Jannotta, who graduated from Princeton in 1953, is a senior adviser at William Blair and Company, one of the nation’s leading regional investment banks. His wife helps run a Chicago-based foundation that gives money to Chicago public elementary schools.
DelGiorno House is named for Bernard DelGiorno (A.B. ’54, A.B. ’55, M.B.A ’55), who received two different bachelor’s degrees from the College. He is currently a vice president of investments at UBS Financial Services.
Crown House is named for trustee James Crown, who served as trustee chair until last year. Crown belongs to one of the city’s richest families; Henry Crown Field House is named after his grandfather. Crown graduated from Hampshire College in 1976 and is president of Henry Crown and Company, an investment firm.
Halperin House is named for former trustee Robert M. Halperin (Ph. B ’47), a tech magnate who founded Vitria Technology in 2004.”
by The Chicago MaroonSep 18, 2009
“The Student Care Center (SCC) will hire three new staffers this year and dedicate both its doctors solely to SCC work, the most significant parts of student health care reform announced early this month.
The SCC will add a doctor and two nurses to its staff in an attempt to cut down on the sometimes week-long wait times to schedule appointments at the clinic. The doctor will join one other physician who will have no other responsibilities outside of SCC work.
“Student health care is one of our top priorities that we want to improve,” said Vice President of Campus Life Kimberly Goff-Crews, who oversaw the changes. “We used to have doctors who were not dedicated to work at the SCC. Now students will see the same doctors each time they come in.”
The new staff is expected to be hired by the end of the quarter.
Student groups have been pushing for more comprehensive health care since last December, when several activist groups held meetings calling out the University on four-to-six month wait times to see an OB/GYN.
In June, the Inter-House Council (IHC) released a report that said about half of students surveyed had trouble scheduling an appointment within a week of an accident or of contracting an acute illness. They also found that a third of students felt SCC staff had trivialized their symptoms.
While Goff-Crews’s reforms address the most pressing student complaint, appointment wait times, they do not implement improvements Goff-Crews herself advocated in February.
Last winter, Goff-Crews announced the results of a University study calling for creating an executive director by the end of this year to oversee both the SCC and the Student Counseling and Resource Service (SCRS), as well as a unified space for both services to share.
Goff-Crews said there were currently no plans to create that executive position.
The IHC report also advocated sensitivity training for SCC staff. Goff-Crews said the SCC director was working on improvements, but did not provide any specifics.
An e-mail to students early this month announced other changes as well. The SCC will continue its late hours Tuesday through Thursday, and will feature a massage therapist and lower co-pays for student insurance. Referral procedures will be streamlined and a Health and Wellness Director will be added to the SCRS.
Ginger Carr, already employed by the SCRS, will fill that role, which will focus on preventive care.
“Ginger will oversee health promotions programs, on-campus meditation, yoga, and exercise,” Goff-Crews said. “She will be the focal point for whatever happens on campus for wellness programs.”
Goff-Crews said no formal standards will be in place to judge the effectiveness for the reforms for at least a year. “I will have conversations with students about what they need to do next, and what objective metrics we need to have in place,” Goff-Crews said. “I don’t anticipate implementing them until next year.”
Nonetheless, Goff-Crews said further changes will take place.
“This is one phase in a series of phases,” she said.”
by The Chicago MaroonSep 18, 2009
“James Madara, dean of the Biological Sciences Division (BSD) and the Pritzker School of Medicine and CEO of the Medical Center (UCMC), announced he would resign last month, effective October 1.
“We have made extraordinary advances in all areas of our mission,” Madara said in a letter to staff. “It is time to turn things over to a new leader, who will inject fresh energy and ideas into our work and ensure our momentum and pace of accomplishment can continue unabated.”
Madara, who united the University’s biomedical research, clinic work, and teaching as the UCMC’s first CEO, has recently been the subject of two University policy reviews and bad press surrounding his policies. Department of Medicine Chair Everett Vokes will serve as interim CEO while a nationwide search for a replacement continues. Neither Madara nor Vokes was available for comment.
As CEO, Madara helped streamline UCMC bureaucracy, increase fundraising, oversee several new medical buildings on campus, and increase medical student resources.
But for months Madara has been criticized for the Urban Health Initiative (UHI), a policy which refers underinsured patients to neighborhood health clinics and community hospitals instead of treating them at the UCMC or its local clinics.
While Madara has said the program helps residents find better preventive care and treatment, critics claim it outsources routine health services for patients without the means to pay. They point to the closing of several University clinics on the South Side that once provided primary care to many residents, while the University retains their revenue-generating clinics in more affluent neighborhoods.
The UHI’s impact on the emergency room, which transferred its patients needing less urgent care to other area facilities, came under stronger attack. The plan came under fire from hospital doctors, a national lobbying group, and Representative Bobby Rush of Illinois, who asked Congress to investigate the policy.
President Robert Zimmer asked for a review of the ER policy in March, led by Vokes, and restored cut hospital beds. A UCMC spokesman did not comment on the status of the review.
Nonetheless, Zimmer applauded Madara in a letter to faculty, reiterating his support for the UHI.
“We have become a national leader and innovator in finding solutions to the nation’s health care challenges through our work on the Urban Health Initiative,” Zimmer wrote. “I want to express my appreciation for and confidence in the Medical Center’s management team, which has implemented our strategy with notable success, especially through the challenging climate of the past year.”
Madara has also been criticized by his own staff. Last year, 76 BSD faculty members signed a letter to Madara, worrying that his reorganization of the UCMC happened too quickly and without enough faculty and staff input.
“The faculty has been disenfranchised,” the letter said. “[Madara’s] combined responsibilities as C.E.O. and dean have distanced [him] from faculty affairs and aspirations.”
Madara created a review board to recommend ways to increase faculty input. The review was expected to be completed in June.
Madara will remain at the UCMC as faculty.”
by The Chicago MaroonSep 18, 2009
“Professor Janet Rowley (B.A. ’44, B.S. ’46, M.D. ’48) was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor, last month at a White House ceremony. Rowley was recognized for her breakthrough work on genetic factors involved in leukemia.
“Her work has proven enormously influential to researchers worldwide who have used her discovery to identify genes that cause fatal cancers and to develop targeted therapies that have revolutionized cancer care,” the award’s citation said.
In 1972, then a part-time researcher, Rowley used the latest genetic technology to compare her patient’s chromosomes. “I could see what chromosome was abnormal in each [leukemia] patient and then whether the same chromosome was abnormal in different patients,” Rowley said.
She proved that the disease was caused when parts of some chromosomes switched places with others, bucking conventional wisdom. Researchers now use that knowledge to hunt for genes that cause other types of fatal cancer.
Rowley was initially shocked when she received a phone call announcing her award. “I was just dumbfounded,” she said. Her accomplishments in cytogenetics, or the study of whole chromosomes, had already been recognized in 1999 when she was awarded the National Medal of Science, so she wondered, “Why recognize them again?”
She said the ceremony was “extremely impressive.” Rowley watched as the other recipients, including former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, physicist Stephen Hawking, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and a proxy for late Senator Ted Kennedy, stood up to receive their medals. “When it was my turn,” she said, “I was so overwhelmed.”
The recipients later assembled in a nearby room for a photo op. When President Obama and his wife entered, Rowley said, they acknowledged each other as fellow Hyde Parkers. “It was a very warm experience,” she said.
Rowley came to the U of C when she was 15, and received three degrees by the time she was 23. She married a U of C doctor the day after she graduated and was soon raising a family of six. She devoted most of her time to her family, working part-time in clinics. Her discovery in 1972, sitting at her kitchen table, led to a decades-long career in research.
“All of us have been touched in some way by cancer, including my family—and so we can all be thankful that what began as a hobby became a life’s work for Janet,” Obama said.
Rowley is no stranger to presidential politics. She was present when Obama signed an executive order in March allowing the use of stem cells in research, and she served on a bioethics committee for former President George W. Bush.
Rowley is direct in her criticism of the former president.
“Clearly Bush overstepped the boundary when he distorted scientific evidence for political purposes. Making critical political judgments based on flawed science is stupid,” she said. Nonetheless, “although we had very different philosophies, we were almost always kind to one another and avoided getting personal in debates.”
The general public, as well as heads of state, have taken notice of Rowley.
“The girl at the check-out counter at Hyde Park Produce asked if I wasn’t the person she had seen on television,” Rowley said. She’s also been asked for autograph many times by e-mail, and by students and professors at scientific conferences.
Rowley is currently in South Korea as a visiting professor at Kyungpook University in Daegu. She was invited by the Korean government as part of a program to improve research and education at Korean universities.”
by The Chicago MaroonSep 18, 2009
“The University hired private security firm AlliedBarton to supply its security guards for the next three years, in a deal effective last month. Forty-two security guards, previously employed directly by the University, were affected by the change.
Unlike UCPD officers, who are sworn law enforcement officers with powers of arrest and the right to carry a weapon, security guards are unarmed. The University’s guards provide building security and patrol Hyde Park on foot and bicycle.
“The change to private security officers is one part of a comprehensive plan to use the University’s safety resources in the most focused, effective, and efficient way possible,” University spokesman Steve Kloehn said. Kloehn added that the plan was devised and implemented by Associate Vice President for Safety and Security Marlon Lynch, who was appointed last year.
Lynch was not available for comment, and Kloehn did not respond to questions about what savings the switch to AlliedBarton could create.
Kloehn said all 42 guards were offered jobs with AlliedBarton, and “many” remain security guards. New guards have since been hired to round out the security force.
“There was no reduction in service or coverage as part of the transition,” Kloehn said.
Not all security guards at the U of C are AlliedBarton employees. At least three guards, all from the Lab Schools, remain with the University, after students, parents, and Lab School faculty asked the administration to reconsider.
“It was clear to security officials, but well-known to us, that they were a lot more than security officers to keep our building safe,” said G. Christopher Jones, Lab Schools business affairs director. “The students formed very close relationships with [the guards].”
Jones said the three guards were well-known to students of the K–12 school.
“This isn’t just about security,” he said. “It’s about valuing the people who contribute to our community.”
While neither Kloehn nor Jones commented on the salary changes offered the guards, blog Hyde Park Progress reported that the guards were offered minimum wage jobs with AlliedBarton, a cut too steep for many to accept.
As the guards retire, they will be replaced by AlliedBarton employees, Jones said.
AlliedBarton, which provides guards to over 125 colleges across the country, has been criticized by several pro-union groups for offering low wages. In an August 27 article in The Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia museum guards employed by AlliedBarton demonstrated last fall for paid sick days. The guards previously had none. Guards hired by the University of Pennsylvania also demonstrated recently, and had their pay raised to $15-an-hour, from $9.70.
Alan Stein, an AlliedBarton spokesman, denied those claims.
“AlliedBarton provides competitive compensation and meaningful benefits to employees,” he said.”
by The Chicago MaroonSep 18, 2009
“Bill Michel (A.B. ’92, M.B.A. ’08), a long-time advocate for arts programming at the University, will be the first executive director for the Logan Arts Center, administrators announced early this month.
Currently the Assistant Vice President for Student Life, Michel will assume his new role on January 1, 2010.
Michel, who has served on every planning group involved in the Logan Center’s development, said he had been thinking about the position since spring quarter of last year.
“I’ve been engaged in developing the center since the beginning,” he said. “As the position developed and the opportunity became available, it became a wonderful way to build on my passion for the arts and the University.”
Michel was involved in University Theater (UT) as an undergraduate—he stage managed several shows, worked as student staff, and occasionally appeared in cameos as himself—and became UT director after he graduated. His experience with the arts, he said, drew him to administrative positions that helped foster arts on campus.
“Creativity and the arts provide a crucial perspective to the critical inquiry that is at the core of the University’s mission,” Michel said. “I’ve believed that since I arrived.”
The Logan Arts Center, one of the University’s major construction projects in the next several years, is expected to open in the spring of 2012 next to Midway Studios. Envisioned to remedy a lack of arts facilities on campus, the center will hold painting and sculpture studios, a late-night café, and several practice and performance spaces, including a 450-seat auditorium.
“We want it to be a place where faculty and students can come together to create art, and encourage interaction and collaboration among various types of art forms,” Michel said.
Michel said that architects are currently finishing plans for the outside appearance of the building and that those designs would be shown to students by the end of the quarter.”