July 23, 2002
Carolina in the News
Here is a sampling of links and notes about Carolina
people and programs cited recently in the national media:
Current National Coverage
Pooling blood allows early discovery of HIV
Widespread screening for very early HIV infection is both possible and practical,
say US researchers. Standard antibody tests can fail to detect infection for up to six
months. But by pooling blood samples from people being screened for HIV, and
testing for viral RNA, it is possible to pick up infections just a few weeks old, the
team says... "The acute stage of the infection is almost never diagnosed in clinical
practice and is always missed by routine antibody tests," says Christopher Pilcher,
at the University of North Carolina.
A new president with a full plate
The Christian Science Monitor
It's been a swift climb through the academic ranks to the pinnacle of higher education
for Mary Sue Coleman, the new president of the University of Michigan... Her own
strong views favoring diversity on campus were shaped in part by her time as a
graduate student in the 1960s. "It was really a pretty homogeneous place, not many
women on the faculty, mostly Caucasian," she recalls of the University of North
Carolina in Chapel Hill. "It was a good education, and I was happy with it, but then
25 years later I had the opportunity to go back and join the administration there.
By then, it was a far more diverse place, faculty and students. It was just a much
more intellectually vibrant place, and I've taken that with me."
Scientists recommend a fresh look at fresh water
Star Tribune (Minnesota)
Ten of the world's largest lakes, including North America's Great Lakes, contain two-
thirds of the world's surface fresh water, and some intriguing unsolved mysteries to
boot... Prof. Hans W. Paerl of the Institute of Marine Sciences at the University of
North Carolina wants to see more nutrient, sediment and "water column" studies that
might help differentiate between natural and human-caused climate changes.
'People who walk say their quality of life is better'
The Roanoke Times (Virginia)
There's no congestion on Melinda Cox's way to work. No maniacal cloverleaf exits.
No rubbernecking delays, road rage or zany morning disc jockeys... Lexington's
sidewalks, streetlights and traffic patterns have helped create a pedestrian-friendly city,
said Mark Fenton, a walking expert at the University of North Carolina at Chapel
Hill and a national pedestrian advocate.
State and Local Coverage
Group sues UNC over assignment
Three unnamed UNC-Chapel Hill freshmen and a conservative Christian organization
have brought a lawsuit against the university, saying the required reading of a book about
Islam is unconstitutional. The suit, filed Monday in federal district court in Greensboro,
says UNC-CH is infringing on students' First Amendment right to religious freedom by
requiring the summer reading selection, "Approaching the Qur'án: The Early Revelations."
Group files suit vs. UNC about Quran
A Christian values group has filed suit against UNC, questioning the constitutionality of
a requirement that incoming students read a text on Islam. In a lawsuit filed Monday in
U.S. District Court in Greensboro, The Virginia-based Family Policy Network is alleging
that UNC’s assignment of "Approaching The Qur’an: The Early Revelations" violates
the rights of students by requiring them to study a religious text.
(Note: The News and Observer's story also has been picked up by the Associated Press,
where links to that service are showing up on the Web sites of media outlets beyond North
Put those fears to rest (Letters to the Editor)
Lately, people have stressed themselves out over UNC Chapel Hill’s mandatory summer
reading for incoming freshmen. This year’s book is “Approaching The Qur’an,” and,
not surprisingly, folks have started spouting the ol’ separation of church and state bit...
UNC wants to reach 1,000 pints of blood
Organizers of UNC’s upcoming blood drive hope to collect 1,000 usable pints of blood
this year, a goal just missed by just two pints one year ago. The 1,000-pint total would
fill two-thirds of a single day’s needs for the region of North Carolina served by this
blood drive. The region covers 80 counties from Wilmington to the North Carolina
We lose the moral high ground (Question-Answer)
Richard Kohn is chairman of the Curriculum in Peace, War and Defense at UNC-
Chapel Hill and an expert on U.S. military policy, strategy and war-making.
THE N&O: The Bush administration's 'first strike' doctrine could be the biggest
transformation of U.S. military strategy in 50 years. What makes it the right way to go
RICHARD KOHN: It isn't the right way to go...
Out-of-bounds redistricting (Opinion-Editorial Column)
It has been fascinating to watch the now-concluded North Carolina redistricting wars.
God knows we've learned a lot. We've seen legislators make decisions for partisan
advantage, and Supreme Court justices respond in kind. Lawsuits have flown in all
directions, simultaneously, pressing mountains of claims. They've been handled with
remarkable dispatch. Sometimes even the courts shift into high gear.
(Note: Gene R. Nichol is dean and Burton Craige professor of Law at the School
Universal ethics would bring us closer to one world (Opinion-Editorial Column)
In 1945, my mentor in philosophy at Harvard, Ralph Barton Perry, published a book
titled "One World in the Making." It grew out of a course on the post-war world that I
worked with him on as his graduate assistant. We all know how quickly in the post-
war era the world split into two bitterly opposed camps and became embroiled in the
Cold War for a generation.
(Note: E.M. Adams is a Kenan professor of philosophy emeritus.)
Drought may yield a glimpse into climate struggles ahead
A drought that punishes the Carolinas with each passing month might also foretell a
warmer, drier future. Past droughts have lasted a decade or longer, according to studies
of tree rings, lake sediment and plantation records. A lingering dry spell in the late 1580s,
some scientists believe, doomed the Lost Colony on an N.C. barrier island... North
Carolina is poorly prepared to cope with the drought, particularly in analyzing its effect
on community water supplies, said David Moreau, a water-resources professor at
UNC Chapel Hill.
Issues and Trends Affecting Carolina
The College Crunch
Robert and Kyuja Kafka never thought they would need a scholarship for their son
Gene, who is enrolled to start college in September. The Kafkas had saved diligently
through a tax-favored college fund. But along with their retirement kitty, the Kafkas'
college savings are dwindling. It's an urgent problem that many families with college-age
children now face: while retirement is still some years away, college, which they thought
they had prepared for, is suddenly a crisis. Some parents are postponing their children's
education; others are bypassing private schools in favor of good old State U.
Debate Over Whether to Defend Animal Tests
The New York Times
There are no more cats in cages in the basement animal experiment rooms at the Ohio
State University veterinary hospital here, but the angry letters still pour in. From
Swarthmore, Pa.: "Cat torture." From West Palm Beach, Fla.: "Cat killer." From Austin,
Tex.: "Despicable torture and murder."
(Note: The New York Times requires free registration to access articles.)
STATE BUDGET: Time to make the tough calls (Editorial)
In February, Gov. Mike Easley put forth a fairly realistic plan for coping with the state
budget shortfall — combining a set of budget cuts from various funds to protect public
and university education. Last week, Easley said he would lay off 1,300 state workers
and eliminate the same number of now vacant positions if the Legislature fails to pass a
budget by the end of the month
Leutze's legacy (Editorial)
Great professors don't always become great administrators, but Jim Leutze has been
both. Now the chancellor of the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, Leutze
announced Friday that he will be retiring next year. And that, one may be sure, has
caused some figurative clouds to roll in over the Port City... Jim Leutze knows what
a university is supported to be about -- all about. It would be smart for the UNC
system and President Molly Broad to draw on that wisdom in the coming years. And
perhaps this hall-of-fame teacher will again practice his magic in the classroom.
Campus neighbors irritated by drunks
Angie Chevalier suspects -- but does not know for sure -- that drunken college students
snatched one of two greyhound statues from the front stoop of her Furches Street home
near the N.C. State University campus... In Chapel Hill, police have responded to nearly
1,500 complaints of vandalism, loud music, arguments, fisticuffs, public urination and
other similar disturbances since January 2001.
NCCU to expand through private funding
Private funding being used to build a dormitory on land now occupied by homes near
N.C. Central University could become the school’s model for acquiring future property
it needs to grow. The dorm will cost an estimated $15 million to $20 million. It’s planned
for the intersection of Fayetteville Street and Formosa Avenue, across from the old Hillside
High School, which NCCU owns and will demolish next month.
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