VIDEO: 98th Student Senate Inaugurated

April 26, 2011 by · Comments Off 

By Andy Garcia

The 98th Student Senate was inaugurated Tuesday in the Hughes Trigg Student Center Commons.

Following the inauguration the student government elected members of the legislature to the following positions.

Student Senate Officers:

Ted Belden

Alex Morgan

Chief of Staff:
Alex Mace

The Daily Update: Monday, April 11

April 11, 2011 by · Comments Off 

The Daily Update: Monday, April 11 from on Vimeo.

Japan is suffering after another earthquake and the unrest in the Middle East is shaking up gas prices in the United States. The demand for used cars is also increasing, find out how you can make a profit from this trend. All this and more on your Daily Update.

VIDEO: Car Burglaries Burst the SMU Bubble

March 25, 2011 by · Comments Off 

By Andy Garcia

VIDEO: Package on Car Burglary from on Vimeo.

While many students feel their vehicles are safe on the Southern Methodist University campus, the danger of burglary is present.

Jenny Devries vehicle was parking in front of the sorority houses along Daniel Avenue when it was broken into.

“When I first saw it nothing was wrong with it,” said Devries. “Then when I saw that my jacket that was in the back seat was gone I realized that someone had taken the stuff out of it.”

According to SMU police records, between 2007 and 2010 there were 74 incident of vehicle burglary on campus.

Most of the break-happen on the perimeter of campus such as the Dedman Center parking lot and the law-parking garage.

SMU Police Detective Linda Perez wants SMU to know who is breaking into the vehicles and where are they coming from.

“They are people that primarily reside somewhere off campus,” said Perez.“They have talked to other individuals who have told them this is a target rich environment.”

To help prevent burglary keep valuables out of plain site. Slow drivers in parking lots and unfamiliar people hanging out near cars are also a red flag.

“Its one of those things that you always know happens to people but I never thought it would actually happen to me,” said Devries.

Taking extra precautions could help keep your own valuables yours.

Senate Report: Tuesday, Feb. 15

February 15, 2011 by · Comments Off 

By Andy Garcia

New senators were sworn into office today and a bill regarding charted organizations was brought to the floor. All this and more on your Senate Report.

Senate Report: Tuesday, Feb. 16 from on Vimeo.

Packers Arrive For Super Bowl; Will Practice in Park Cities

January 31, 2011 by · 3 Comments 

Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers fields questions during a Super Bowl press conference Monday at the Omni Mandalay Hotel. (PHOTO BY BRITTANY LEVINE / SMU DAILY MUSTANG)

The Green Bay Packers arrived for Super Bowl XLV on Monday afternoon, touching down at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport just before 4 p.m. The NFC champions will practice this week at SMU’s Ford Stadium and also at Highland Park High School’s indoor practice facility.

On Tuesday, check back for a video capturing the Packers’ arrival, and follow the #sbsmu hashtag to keep track of our Super Bowl Media Day tweets from Cowboys Stadium in Arlington.

Members of the Green Bay Packers make their way from the plane to shuttle buses after landing at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport on Monday afternoon. (PHOTO BY BRITTANY LEVINE / SMU DAILY MUSTANG)

College Grads Make Their Mark in the Service Industry

December 10, 2010 by · Comments Off 

By Bridget Bennett

David Jander of Mesquite received a bachelor’s degree in physics and mathematics from Charleston State University in 1980. He had earned a master’s degree and a doctorate in physics from the University of North Texas by 1991.

While working on his advanced degrees, Jander, 47, worked as a research assistant conducting feasibility studies for a gamma ray laser. He wrote a doctoral dissertation titled “Optical and Structural Studies of Laser Plasma Discharge Diamond Films.”

Today David Jander is not a physicist or a mathematician. He is a valet driver and parking supervisor in Dallas.

Jander is one of more than 112 million Americans working in what the Bureau of Labor statistics calls service-providing industries. While many of these positions may provide low hourly rates, some service jobs at high-end restaurants, exclusive private parties and designer vendors can provide a very stable salary. From interviews with service industry employees in Dallas, it appears some of people are over qualified for their position.

In 2009, college enrollment in the U.S. reached a record high, with more than 70 percent of recent high school graduates taking college courses according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. At the same time, unemployment rates were the highest they had been in more than 30 years. In light of these statistics, some college graduates are finding positions in the vast service industry appealing, even though they may have been trained for more specialized professions.

New York Times columnist David Leonhardt recently spoke at Southern Methodist University about unemployment and the struggling economy. Leonhardt said the economy has been hard on everyone, including the highly educated. But unemployment rates are still the highest for people without higher education.

“There is a sort of switch going on where highly educated people are taking the jobs generally filled by the lesser educated,” Leonhardt said in an interview following his lecture.

Fort Worth native Mason Norlander, who said he is “pushing half a century,” knows all about this switch. Norlander traded his bank cubicle and paperwork for open tables and wine lists as a server.

“Two and two is always going to be four; the human factor is so much more fun,” Norlander said.

Norlander graduated from Texas Christian University with an accounting degree and worked for “king and country” for seven years and four months. During that time, his company went through two mergers and one bailout.

“I have not been to a bank since and have no plans to,” he said.

Starbucks supervisor Warren Eely attributes his current job position to personal growth. Eely, 28, has a bachelor’s degree in finance and a master’s in theology. He spent a year as an overseas missionary, but came back to work for what he calls a great company and a great boss.

“Do I wish I was making more money than I am now, sure, but the opportunity to grow as a leader is worth it,” Eely said.

But some service industry jobs can be far from a financial burden. Jander said his financial compensation has kept him at his valet position.

“I would take a pretty substantial pay cut to teach high school. Even teaching college would mean a substantial pay cut in the short term,” Jander said.

Norlander said he has a comfortable lifestyle with a 401K and full insurance. His best year at the restaurant brought him $72,000. And he said he has never made less than $60,000 a year.

SMU student Tiffany Hoffman understands the benefits of a job in the service industry. Hoffman, who is majoring in economics and sports management, works part time at Lilly Pulitzer in NorthPark Center. She said she receives decent compensation, but especially loves her 20 percent employee discount.

“If I were a manager there it could be a full time job, but it is still something you can definitely live off,” she said.

Considering the job market, Hoffman said she would gladly stay at her retail job after she graduates if she cannot find something in her field right away.

“A job is a job,” she said.

But Norlander, a nine-year employee of Oceanaire Seafood Room in the Galleria Mall, says it can be so much more than just a job. Despite some long hours, short weekends, and missed holidays, Norlander said it is the people who come through the door of his restaurant that make his job so much fun.

“If you treat people with respect, you can have a lot of fun,” Norlander said.
For Jander, the physicist-turned-valet, the quality time he can spend with his family makes his job worthwhile.

“Before meeting my wife, I was perfectly ok spending the whole day in a lab. But then I decided I didn’t want to be lying in bed trying to solve a math problem,” he said.

VIDEO: Religion on the SMU Campus

November 22, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

SMU-TV’s Nick Cains takes you into the religious background behind Southern Methodist University, what religion the majority of students identify with and how it affects campus life.

SMU-TV: Religion on Campus from on Vimeo.

Global News Blog: We are better than this

October 16, 2010 by · Comments Off 

Posted by Lauren Macias

Is it any wonder why other countries hate us? In America, we think so highly of ourselves and of our dedication to the rights of man but in reality we’re the terrorist that other countries make us out to be.

If I were to tell you  that Nazi’s secretly infected Guatemalan soldiers, prisoners and mental patients with syphilis, without their consent, you would have no problem believing me. We are programmed to know that Nazi’s are the greatest criminals against humanity the world has ever seen.

But what about us?

As you may have read, Americans were the ones in the late 1940′s to infect these unwilling participants with syphilis and other STDs. We are the monsters that paid infected prostitutes to sleep with prisoners,  put scrapes on their private parts, faces and hands or even injecting these diseases into their spines all in the name of “medicine”.

All of this occurred while we were  punishing Nazi Doctors for similar “crimes against humanity” and unethical medical experiments during the Nuremburg trials. We punished Nazi’s for the same crime we were committing back home.

The hypocrisy literally makes me sick to my stomach.

According to the New York Times, I am not alone. Guatemalan citizens are now demanding payments of indemnity for what we’ve done, and our apologies mean nothing to them.

And American’s wonder why the rest of the world hates us? It’s time for us to wake up and realize what our actions have done for our reputation. We have to demand our government and businesses act in the way that we believe America should, and the way that America sees itself. We see ourselves as the torch for freedom; the leaders of human rights and justice and we have to start reflecting that. No more using China and Guatemalan people as our slave-labor factories, no more supporting oppressive regimes because they are economically convenient to us at this moment. We are better than this, and it’s time our actions follow.

There’s an App for That

October 9, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

By Liz Collinsworth

Welcome to the iPhone generation, a world where movie theatres lie in the palm of a hand and video chat brings distant friends face-to-face. Smartphones have single-handedly diminished the virtue of patience with instant gratification at the fingertips of owners.

Smartphones enable users to receive information on command, with online databases and applications supplying results over WiFi, 3G and 4G networks in minimal response time.

In response to the sudden increase in student smartphone users, colleges and universities across the nation have developed applications to follow college sports, events, and campus updates. SMU offers applications following both sports teams and the opinion essays of the SMU Honors Program.

In a survey of 84 SMU students, 86.9 percent of students own either an iPhone or other form of smartphone; 89 percent of students were unaware that SMU apps existed. Of those surveyed, 90.1 percent were interested in the development of more SMU smartphone applications. In a comparison of the types of apps students would purchase, a majority held interest in local events/deals with study tools close behind as the second most popular choice. Currently, 53.7 percent of the 84 students surveyed use their smartphones for school related purposes.

While cell phones in the classroom were once a teacher’s worst pet peeve, the development of educational and school-related applications may lead to a change of heart in educators everywhere. SMU Senior, Briana Darensburg believes new SMU smartphone apps would benefit students by keeping them connected and involved in the university while increasing efficiency.

“I personally think professors are scared of using phones in the classroom because as much as they are useful, they can definitely be a distraction. It’s about finding the right balance between being up-to-date with technology without losing the interpersonal relationship,” said Darensburg. claimed that smartphones have sparked an educational revolution in Anya Kamenetz’s article “A Is for App.” Students with smartphones can now download entire select textbooks in less time than it takes to drive to the store and purchase the book. At the end of the school day, users can practically bring the teacher home with them with the creation of interactive study tool applications.

Leksi Gawor, MAC representative for SMU, Emerging Leaders Chair and SMMUG (Southern Methodist Mac User Group) member, believes that smartphones benefit students and sees a need to develop more for students to keep up with the outstanding presence of smartphones on campus. SMMUG is an on campus organization dedicated to increasing awareness of what students and staff can do to achieve more technologically integrated experiences on and off campus.

“Since this day and age is all about efficiency, why not push the development of smartphone applications to the extreme?” said Gawor.

“I think SMU would greatly benefit from having such an application because it gives its students yet another way to feel personally connected to the university while giving them ease of access to campus-wide information,” Gower continued.

Gawor believes that SMU is currently in the process of developing a university app for students. Whether rumor or fact, students can take advantage of the SMU related apps Hilltopics and Sports Fan, and can even receive user support through the SMMUG special events that utilize Apple applications.

Android, Blackberry, iPhone, and the Palm are just a few of the smartphones in the hands of SMU students as they download applications for entertainment, education, and social media. As the amount of applications continues to increase, opportunities for developers to create new apps multiply. Study guides and tools lie within the palms of student’s hands creating a convenient, textbook-free way to learn without making a trip to the library simply because “There’s an app for that.”

Dean Godzilla Talks Monsters

October 6, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

By Andy Garcia

A projector screen lights up with the black and white scene of a titanic reptilian monster rampaging through a cityscape. Mobs of people run mindlessly trying to escape the ensuring carnage, their efforts in vain.

The camera angle shifts to a full shot of the monster as it exhales a blast of atomic energy and a blood curling scream.

Godzilla continues with his destruction of Tokyo, while the 1956 “Godzilla, King of the Monsters” trailer capitalizes on the film’s “dynamic violence,” resulting in laughter from the 21st century audience.

A published authority on Japanese culture Dedman College Dean Dr. William Tsutsui spoke about the significance of Godzilla, to nearly 150 people in McCord Auditorium Tuesday night.

“Godzilla films can provide us valuable insights into Japanese culture since World War II,” Tsutsui said.

Dean William Tsutsui explains that Godzilla is one of the most recognizable Japanese figures amongst the world during his lecture Tuesday night on Godzilla and Japanese Culture. (PHOTO BY MARISSA BELSKE / SMU DAILY MUSTANG)

According to Tsutsui the 28 films in the Godzilla series have developed around major issues like nuclear weapons, pollution, and corporate greed.

SMU sophomore Kelsey Pearson was surprised to learn how Godzilla is more than just an action movie franchise.

“I thought it was really interesting when he described all the ways Godzilla was used,” Pearson said. “I guess I had never thought before about how Godzilla could be interpreted.”

"Godzilla On My Mind" is the book William Tsutsui wrote on the impact of Godzilla on Japanese culture. (PHOTO BY MARISSA BELSKE / SMU DAILY MUSTANG)

In his lecture Tsutui keyed in on the theme of anti-American sentiment prevalent amongst the films. The first Godzilla film, “Gojria,” provides an example. The film was released less than ten years after the U.S. defeat of Japan in World War II and uses “memories of the past war and fears of a coming war seemingly intertwined, always with an unspoken antagonism towards America” Tstutsui said.

“It was interesting to learn how Godzilla was in some way a symbol of anti-Americanism and hostility towards America,” Pearson said.

The pinnacle of the hostility towards the U.S. can be seen in “King Kong vs. Godzilla” which Tsutsui said is billed as a showdown between America and Japan, ending with a tie between the two monsters in the hope of a sequel that never materialized.

For those in the audience not familiar with the films, Tsutsui provided a background on Godzilla. While speaking about the orignal film Tsutsui explained how Godzilla’s name originated from the merging of the Japanese words for whale and gorilla and their translation into English.

“It is tempting to think that somehow the people who were coming up with the name, were thinking of God and this kind of a deity like nature for the monster,” Tsutsui said. “In fact, that was simply just how Japanese was Anglicized back in the day.”

Merry Nadler, who watched the original American film “Godzilla, King of the Monsters” in the theater, was impressed with Tsutsui’s enthusiasm for the topic.

Known around the Southern Methodist University campus as “Dean Godzilla,” Tsutsui’s love for the monster goes back to his youth when he was looking for a Japanese icon. Even now Tsutsui’s office in Dallas Hall is filled with Godzilla toys and posters.

Tsutsui shared his passion for all things Godzilla when he described seeing a major prop from the first movie as “the greatest day of my life.”

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