North Carolina Newspapers

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Candidates Cater to Potential New Voters
By Brook Corwin
Staff Writer
Anticipating a growing pool of likely
voters because of online
voting, candidates in this
year’s student elections
are working to expand
their campaigns and plat
forms in order to appeal
to a broader audience.
The candidates in this
year’s student elections
feel that a higher voter
turnout will force cam
paigns to solicit support
from more than just
A three-part series
examining the impact of
online voting on student
body elections.
■ Today: Campaign Effects
■ Friday: Is It Safe?
major student organizations.
“In the past, if you hit the right
UNC System
Won't Feel
Fund Freeze
Gov. Mike Easley put a
freeze on new hires, travel
and construction projects to
cope with the budget deficit.
By Jennifer Hagin
Staff Writer
In one of his first policy initiatives as
governor, Mike Easley announced a
plan last week to deal with the most
daunting problem facing his administra
tion -a SSOO million state budget deficit.
The N.C. con
stitution states that
each fiscal year
must end with a
balanced budget.
But facing an
increasing budget
deficit, Easley last
week released his
plan to control it
by putting a freeze
on new hires, pur
chases, unneces
sary travel and
building projects.
But the freeze
will have little
impact on the
N.C. Gov.
Mike Easley
announced the
spending plan to
help fight the current
budget deficit.
UNC-system hirings or construction
funded by the bond referendum.
Jeff Davies, UNC General
Administration vice president of
finance, said the personnel freeze will
not apply to teaching positions in the
the UNC system.
“We have agreed with the governor
and his staff that the UNC system is
subject to budget reversions,’’ he said.
Reversions are unspent funding that
government agencies must return to the
See BUDGET, Page 4
Students Benefit From Wireless Access
By Kim Minugh
University Editor
The latest wave of technology is cresting on
UNC’s campus and students already are reaping
the benefits with no strings attached - literally.
Wireless technology is now placing students,
faculty and staff at the forefront of the techno
logical revolution, providing high-speed
Internet access in classrooms, labs and even
coffee shops on Franklin Street.
“I am pleased and proud that we are taking
this position nationally. I’m convinced what
we’re doing is at the vanguard of higher educa
tion,” said Chancellor James Moeser. “I believe
that Chapel Hill is really breaking ground.”
About 40 locations on campus have been
linked to wireless Cisco Systems Inc. access
points - small hubs that are plugged into the
central campus network and stored in closets or
groups, you’d probably win,” said
Carolina Athletic Association president
candidate Reid Chaney. “Now you have
to campaign to everyone.”
Several candidates cited
this year’s Homecoming
elections, which pre
miered online voting at
UNC and boasted more
than a 400 percent
increase in turnout, as evi
dence that the number of
voters Feb. 13 will escalate.
But Raj Mirchandani, a
former student body pres
ident at N.C. State
University who won the
school’s first election with online voting,
said such an increase did not occur. He
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DTH/PHOTO ILLUSTRATION BY BRENT CLARK AND JASON COOPER
Children and adults alike are taking advantage of the convenience that comes with owning a nonmotorized, portable scooter.
Brian Decker of Franklin Street Cycles demonstrates how these lightweight scooters can go from riding to storing position in no time flat.
Colorful, Convenient ...and Collapsible
When most people see her, they do a dou
ble take.
While the sound of whirling wheels
against concrete is not an unfamiliar one around
campus, the sight of freshman
Jamiyla Bolton gliding around the
second floor of Morrison Residence
Hall on a scintillating silver scooter
prompts many students to stop and stare.
Bolton is one of many trailblazers who passed
up inline skates and a bike to sport the latest
trend of transportation to sweep the nation -a
windows - that provide Internet connections to
laptops within a given radius.
The upgrades, which began last fall, syn
chronize well with the first year of the Carolina
Computing Initiative, which requires freshmen
to own laptops.
This year’s freshman class - 3,400 in total - is
the first class to test an ambitious plan to provide
all students with access to advanced technology
and promote a broader educational experience
in and out of the classroom. “The whole CCI is
really not about technology, but about trans
forming the way students learn,” Moeser said.
Wireless access even extends to Franklin
Street. Emanating from the second floor of
Battle Hall, radio signals allow students to take
advantage of the new technology from the cool
shade of McCorkle Place, the quiet comfort of
Caffe Trio or the popular heights of Hector’s.
Greenlaw Hall is one location where stu
Much madness is divinest sense , To a discerning eye.
Emily Dickenson
Gotta Have Faith
Local religious leaders are wary of
President Bush's plan to fund
faith-based charities. See Page 3
Serving the students and the University community since 1893
said the percentage of students voting
went from about 10 percent to 12 percent
Mirchandani said that while he did
campaign to students who might not
have voted in the absence of online bal
lots, he did not recommend relying on
new voters to win an election. “You have
to look at online voters as icing on the
cake because you really don’t know how
many new people will be voting,” he
said. “You need to come into election
day with a firm base of supporters."
But candidates said it is important to
attract a wider range of students to their
campaigns, and many of them are using
new techniques to accomplish that goal.
“It’s all about being creative,” said stu
dent body president candidate Justin
Young. “I want people to actively find out
new breed of collapsible scooters.
Although scooters might look like child’s play,
more often college students like Bolton and
trendsetting adults are catching the recent craze.
The new aluminum scooters have
inline-style wheels and rear-fender
friction brakes for fast and easy stop
ping. The average scooter weighs
By Stefanie Wowchuk
Staff Writer
about seven pounds and can be easily folded and
stowed, convenient for the typical college stu
dent.
And as they grow in popularity, so do con-
dents are connecting to the Web sans wires. In
spring 1999, the Department of English pilot
ed a handful of “English Composition” classes
using the wireless technology that had recent
ly been incorporated in several Greenlaw class
rooms.
Assistant Professor of English Todd Taylor
said updating the technology in Greenlaw took
just two days and $15,000 -a marked contrast
to the $150,000 and a semester of work need
ed to hardwire some classrooms with desktop
Internet connections in 1998.
Now 11 sections of “English Composition”
are being taught in Greenlaw, bringing wireless
technology to the fingertips of 220 students,
Taylor said. “Students have repeatedly told me,
‘This is what I hoped college would be like,’” he
said. “We think this is the future of education, and
See WIRELESS, Page 4
about my campaign instead of ramming
it down their throats by harassing them
on the phone or knocking on their door.”
Young said he is trying to accomplish
these goals by drawing students to his
campaign Web site, an idea that is also
being utilized by many election candidates
to reach a larger percentage of the student
body. “A Web page is something everyone
can click on,” said student body president
candidate Annie Peirce. “If students are
getting online to vote, and they have some
doubts about the candidates, they can click
on a few Web sites and hopefully be more
confident in their vote.”
Senior class president candidate Ben
Singer said he and his running mate,
Ursula Dimmling, are using their site to
try and make themselves more accessi
cems about their safety.
Freshman Justin Lynch, a scooter owner, said,
“They’re a fun way to get around. You can fold
them up and take them to class; they’re very
portable.”
Popular models include the Razor, Kickboard
and Xootr. They are sold everywhere from the
local 7-Eleven to the more exclusive The Sharper
Image, a chain of high-end specialty stores. Prices
for the average scooter range from S3O to $l5O.
See SCOOTERS, Page 4
Wireless Wonders
University officials say that only a portion of the benefits associated with wireless technology have been tapped. The
advanced technology is already in use at popular educational and social settings such as Greenlaw Hall and Caffe Trio.
Other wireless access points on campus;
Beard Hall
Health Sciences Library
Rosenau Hall
Chancellor's Residence
Sitterson Hall
Kenan-Flagler Business School
SOURCE: NEWS SERVICES
-
ble to the general student body through
online surveys. “None of the ideas on
my platform are my own,” he said.
“They all came through the surveys.”
Many candidates said increased
accessibility was necessary because stu
dents who do not traditionally follow
student elections will be voting this year.
“It’s not just going to be student orga
nizations,” said student body president
candidate Caleb Ritter. “Lots of people
will be voting, even if they don’t know
much about the campaign.”
Mirchandani said he took advantage
of online voting by attracting many such
first-time voters, which he said he
accomplished by informing them of the
See STRATEGY, Page 4
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- . . I 6
Over the Hump
Today: Partly Cloudy, 63
Thursday: Cloudy, 50
Friday: Cloudy, 48
Wednesday, January 31, 2001
USSA Issue
Re-emerges
In Election
Despite the resurgence
of debate regarding USSA
membership, the issue will
not appear on ballots.
By Noelle Hutchins
Staff Writer
Although a referendum in support of
the University’s representation in the
United States Students Association
failed last year, the issue has resurfaced
among this year’s student body presi
dent candidates.
The USSA is the largest and oldest
organization in the country that lobbies
the national government for financial
aid and minority rights for students.
While the USSA referendum made it
on the ballot last February, there were
not enough student votes to pass the
measure, which would have increased
student fees by $3 to generate the
$75,000 needed to pay for membership.
UNC is connected with the USSA
through the UNC Association of
Student Governments, which granted
the University membership as a sub
scriber.
But the University does not have
national representation, which is the
type of membership that appeared on
last year’s ballot
Last spring’s student body president
candidate Erica Smiley, who pushed for
the referendum, said there appears to
be little concern from students as to
whether the University has national rep
resentation.
“There are a lot of universities that
have national representation, and it is
an excellent organization to organize
power and empowerment” said Smiley,
who is active in USSA.
After Monday night’s College
Republicans’ and Young Democrats’
forum, student body president candi
dates expressed their views on whether
they supported representation in USSA,
Student body president candidate
Larry Harper, who supports represen
tation, said that students should know
about the issue but that it is not a press
ing issue on campus. “It is a good
opportunity for which students can
lobby, petition, and make others aware
of their rights,” Harper said.
But many other candidates feel that
the referendum issue is not as important
and that there are other issues that con
cern the student body besides national
representation in the USSA.
Student body president candidate
Justin Young said there are other issues
such as improving race relations, having
off-campus Internet access and fighting
tuition increases that must be taken care
of first “I think that we should definite
ly learn more about it,” he said, “sup
port the issues on campus, (and) once
See USSA, Page 4
DTO LAUREN DAUGHTRY
    

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