Friday, March 27, 2009

Campus Activities Council is Ready for a Change

Kirsten Brinlee and Clara Mitcham discussing homecoming ideas. (Photo by Colbi Beam)

Courtney Nelson speaking about Campus Activities Council

Some students believe that Campus Activities Council is biased in preference of students in Greek houses and that those who aren't Greek don't have the same opportunities to get involved.

Campus Activities Council is a branch off of UOSA designed to create and organize the large scale events at OU. According to the CAC website, the events hosted by CAC include major activities like Homecoming, University Sing, Dance Marathon, and Howdy Week. The council also brings year-round attractions, including: films, concerts, and speakers.

Each of these events has their own committee, offering several students to get involved in the process of creating each attraction. However, some students think that the basis for choosing these leaders to get involved is biased in their Greek affiliation.

"I think that the system is run by Greeks," Courtney Nelson, un-affiliated student said. "Because of that when it comes time to choose, they choose people they know. People from other Greek houses. It makes it really hard for everyone else that wants to get involved."

Some Campus Activities Council leaders disagree that the bias exists in selecting leaders.

"I received over a hundred applications for people that wanted to be on Homecoming exec, and there were less than ten applicants that weren't Greek," Clara Mitcham, Homecoming Chair, said. "I can't pick people who don't apply. I would actually be more apt to put someone on my exec that's not Greek just because they want to get other non-Greek people involved."

CAC Executive Committee member, Chrissie Johnson, said that she thought that each candidate is evaluated fairly but occasionally prior knowledge may be brought up.

However, not all Campus Activities Council members disagree completely with the complaint.

"I do think that there can be a sense of nepotism," Kirsten Brinlee, CAC Public Relations officer, said. "Event chairs are human, but I don't think on a broad level that Greek individuals have any more clout than non-Greek individuals."

There are most definitely parallels in the kind of people that are involved with CAC and Greek life. People that join fraternities and sororities want to be involved, they are outgoing and want to be around other people and those are the same kinds of people that want to apply for CAC, Brinlee said.

"CAC is looking for people who want to be leaders, that want to be plugged-into campus and those people usually want to be in the Greek system for the same reasons," Mitcham said.

Campus Activities Council has six members on its executive council and presently all six are currently or have been in a Greek house during their college career. However, the general council for CAC is more diverse; five of the seventeen non-executive general council members are unaffiliated and are among the highest positions CAC has to offer.

"There is a good spread of Greek people and non-Greek people," Johnson said.

While some feel that the mix is just right, others think there is room for improvement.

"The executive council right now is the remainders of what CAC used to be, back when it was primarily Greek," said Brinlee. "We are in the process of change, but that takes time for everyone."

Event chairs are working to make the events more accessible to other groups on campus and trying to redefine what their events are.

"I think that the chairs are becoming experts at their events," said Brinlee. "They are trying to see what people want and make them better. University Sing and Homecoming this year opened up a 'town meeting' so people could vent their feelings about the event and discuss the changes they hope to see. The chairs want to include more than the Greek system in this."

Although CAC chairs are trying to change the way the system works, there are other factors to consider. The Greek system is very important to campus as a whole, according to the Panhellenic website, 25% of all the undergraduate women on campus are in a Panhellenic sorority. That is only one of the several Greek organizations.

"I know I want to make homecoming accessible to everyone, I want to make it affordable and encourage everyone to get involved," Mitcham said. "However, Greek organizations are the ones that want to participate. Yes, making a huge float is expensive for smaller organizations, but at the same time it is a part of the tradition."

While no one can argue that Greek students are the majority of CAC leaders, some think that this will change very soon.

"CAC is undertaking an organizational culture change," Brinlee said. "It has changed a lot, it has become less Greek since the time I was a freshman. As for the current leadership, we are a result of how CAC was, and in the next couple of years we will see a change of a better educated better and a qualified council. That is exciting!"

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Student Life Photo Contest

The Student Life Academic Calendar Photo Contest is offering students the opportunity to show their life at OU.

Student life is hosting a photo contest to represent the "spirit of student life" at OU. Prizes include a book scholarship from the OU Bookstore.
"We are asking students to show us their view of student life here on our campus," Emily Hilburn, Assistant to the Director of Student Life, said. "We want to showcase their talent by publishing the top three photographs."

Photo submissions are due to Emily Hilburn by Sunday April 29, 2009 in the Student Life Office. For more information on guidelines and prizes you can visit the Student Life website.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

New UOSA Leaders already Disappointing Students

Elizabeth Evans discussing Katie and Dewey's platform. (Photo by Colbi Beam)

Elizabeth Evans on the new UOSA officers.

The new UOSA president and vice president ran unopposed and some students worry that the lack of selection lead to a compromise in expectations.

Katie Fox, president, and Dewey Bartlett, vice president, have goals ranging from a UOSA sponsored tailgate in the fall to fine arts season passes. These platforms are significantly different than the past representatives have chosen to pursue.

Amanda Holloway and Vince Winston had platform advocating parking improvements and increases in funding for student organizations.

"In general I would say that I am disappointed in their platform," Elizabeth Evans said. "With the position and resources that they have I think they could be doing so much more with this office."

Students can learn more about Fox and Bartlett's platform by visiting their website at and can contact through email at

Sunday, March 15, 2009

The New Diet Pill

Some students are using Adderall as a weight loss drug, and this trend may be more dangerous than some have suspected.

Adderall is a prescription drug designed to help people with ADHD or narcolepsy and one of the many side effects is a decreased appetite. However, many students don't know that other side effects of this drug include: an irregular heartbeat and the possibility of heart failure or seizures.

The drug is also related to crystal meth, in that they are both amphetamines. Adderall, in its intended use, is not very addictive; however, used in excess for weight loss it can become both psychologically and physically addictive.

"I think I would still use adderall as a diet pill," Heather Hall said. "All medications have side effects, if you use them responsibly and watch your symptoms then they shouldn't be a problem."

If this trend continues, student can expect an increase in the use of illegal drugs.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Spies on Facebook

Students can find their jobs on facebook now, government agencies are using facebook and other social-networking sites to recruit students and new employees.

The CIA and the National Security Agency have both created 'Pages' on facebook offering employment opportunities to users. Jobs range from accountants to analytic methodologists to cryptanalysts.
"I think it is nice that the employers are trying to reach out and touch us," Elizabeth Evans said. "I have been trying to get internships and jobs, but I feel like I have to look everywhere. It is nice for them to start connecting with young people through a network they already use."

Students can find these pages by visiting facebook or going to the CIA's or the National Security Agency's websites.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Sooner rugby team shuts out the OSU Cowboys

Sooners in their last huddle of the game. (Photo by Colbi Beam)

Sooners and Cowboys fighting for the ball. (Photo by Colbi Beam)

Sooner fans can cheer once again because the sooner rugby team shut out the OSU Cowboys in their last game of the year.

The team is now the new Central League Champions and the score was 47-0 by the end of the game this past Saturday, March 6, 2009. In winning this title, the team earned a spot at the national playoffs.

"In winning the central league we earned a banner for our clubhouse and a title that we haven't had since 2001," Austin Ryan, OU rugby player, said.

The next game will be the Varsity versus the alumni game here in Norman on Saturday, March 14, 2009. To see more about the team you can visit their website at

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

No Smoking in Norman

Natalie Vaughn smoking outside. (Photo by Colbi Beam)

Elise Lippe, non-smoker, on the issue

The Norman City Council is considering a smoking ban in public parks and some students are torn as to how they feel about this issue.

The city council has asked the city staff members to create a bill banning cigarrette smoking and other types of tobacco use in public parks due to tobacco's adverse effect on others.

"I think that it would be OK in children's play grounds," Natalie Vaughn, smoker, said. "But I don't think it should necessarily be the entire area. I mean, if you can't smoke outside where can you smoke?"

The city staff members are currently drawing up an ordinance and if it passes it will be banned. If citizens have an opinion on this they can contact Mayor Cindy Rosenthal by email: or call her at 405-366-5402.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Greek Students Hoping to Learn More From Professors

Greek Community Forum poster. (Photo by Colbi Beam)

Samantha O'Neal speaking about the Greek Community Forum

Greek Community Forums are inviting students from all types of Greek organizations on campus have a chance to learn something new and get to know their professors a little better.

Several forums are held at different locations at the same time on the same night and students get to choose which lecture to go to and they are open to all students involved in a Greek organization on campus. They are directed by OU's Leadership Development and Volunteerism and LEAD Team to allow for a better faculty student relationship within that community.

"Greek Community Forums are a good way for students to have a relationship with professors," Samanth O'Neal, sophomore Panhellenic representative, said. "They also they talk about subjects that are good for the students future well being."

The next Greek Community forum is Tuesday, March 3, 2009 from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. For more information students can contact Leadership Development and Volunteerism at 405-325-4020 or

Themes and locations are:
"The Current Economic Crisis, the Stock Market, and Financial Accounting Information" at the Delta Upsilon house
"Shakespeare Would Have Loved Motion Pictures: Women Behind the Camera During the Silent Era" at the Chi Omega house
"Good Nutrition=Better Grades, Better Friendships, Better Money" at the Alpha Chi Omega house
"Sooners Serving and Learning Along the Way" at the Delta Gamma House
"What is Excellence in Higher Education?- A View from the Honors College" at the Sigma Phi Epsilon house
"Beyond Cinderella's Castle: Leadership Lessons from Disney" at the Beta Theta Pi house