Student Activity Center

Photo Credit: Mariana Munoz | Daily Texan Staff

In a small town where poor boys can’t talk to rich girls, an unlikely friendship begins between the richest girl in town and one of its poorest boys. This is the premise of “Poor Boys’ Chorus,” a new play set to premiere Friday at the Student Activity Center’s Black Box Theater.

According to Brian Kettler, the play’s writer and a theatre and dance graduate student, what follows is a coming-of-age love story.  

“I was really inspired by what I see as some classic coming-of-age stories — so movies like ‘Stand by Me,’ movies like ‘My Girl,’” Kettler said. “It was really an attempt to tap into the feelings [that are] evoked by those kinds of stories.”

For Natile Novacek, theatre and dance graduate student, being the director of the play was about bringing human feelings and conflicts to the stage.    

“It’s also a story about people choosing to make a connection against all odds, people choosing to embrace the light or the dark in them,” said Novacek. “And people who are forced to make choices very early on about what their life is going to look like.”

“Poor Boys’ Chorus” has been a departure from what Kettler usually writes.

“I tend to write a little more naturalism or realism,” Kettler said. “This play is not that. It’s a lot more poetic. There’s a chorus of three boys that drives the action. I’d never written a chorus before into a play.”

The first time Novacek and Kettler began to work together on “Poor Boys’ Chorus” was in a classroom.

“I was lucky enough to be in a class together with Brian, and we were paired to work on it together,” Novacek said. 

In the same class was Will Douglas, the theatre and dance undergraduate who will play Steeds. For Douglas, the amount of time spent playing the character in class prepared him for his time on stage. 

“When you don’t have a performance that you’re getting ready for, you have a lot of space to play, get things wrong and mess up a lot,” said Douglas. “Already having that playtime with the character definitely has made this a lot easier.”

With “Poor Boys’ Chorus,” Kettler and Novacek hope the audience can find an escape from reality, if only for a short time.

“I’d love for them to have that feeling that they’re lost in this kind of fun, dangerous, theatrical world and have them kind of forget that they’re on the UT campus for a little while,” said Kettler. “So that’s my hope, that when the play’s over it would be like waking up from a dream or something.”

Marketing sophomore Laura Bowman and accounting sophomore Archie Agarwal share a meal on the rooftop of the SAC. The SAC is one of several buildings on campus in which students can access the roof.

Photo Credit: Sarah Montgomery | Daily Texan Staff

Although they may be some of the lesser-explored places on campus, the rooftops of several University buildings are home to a variety of features, including gardens, telescopes and even a bee colony.

UT Facilities Services spokeswoman Laurie Lentz said some students go on top of buildings because of class requirements.

“Several buildings allow student and faculty access to the roof due to class experiments or class projects,” Lentz said in an email. “For example, a faculty member maintains a bee colony on the roof of the [J. T. Patterson Laboratories Building], and a telescope is maintained on the roof of RLM.”

Some buildings at the University also have “green roofs,” an environmentally-friendly designation indicating that at least part of the roof is covered with vegetation. According to the Austin Green Roof Advisory Group’s website, green roofs can provide aesthetic value and insulation and reduce storm water runoff.

Lentz said green roofs are not new at the University, although newer buildings — such as the SAC, Hackerman Building and the College of Liberal Arts Building — tend to have more green space.

“UT has a long association with green roofs, dating back to the 1930s when areas of lawn and shrubs were planted on the roofs flanking either side of the Office of the President,” Lentz said. “In more recent times, the largest amount of green roofs has been installed at the Student Activity Center, and a portion of the LBJ plaza — which is also a roof above the space below the plaza — is planted.”

Green roofs are incorporated into new buildings if it’s important to the building’s program and is supportable within a project’s budget, according to Lentz.

Students frequent the roof of the SAC, which has a rooftop garden and Skyspace, a structure by artist James Turrell that illuminates colored light sequences at sunrise and sunset.

Graduate student Taylor Bradley, who works as an attendant at Skyspace, said the roof of the SAC is a popular spot for students to sit and relax during the afternoon.

“Usually, we get more students around lunchtime, and people just kind of nap or relax,” Bradley said. “Occasionally, we get a class or some tourists.” 

According to Lentz, most green roofs on campus are accessible to the public, although about 80 percent of campus buildings require a campus utility machine room key to gain rooftop access. 

Lentz said the Roof Safety Working Group partners with Project Management and Construction Services and the Environmental Health and Safety department to determine parameters for roof access and safety.

“When roofs are accessible to the public, building code dictates the height and type of barrier required for fall protection,” Lentz said. “Project Management and Construction Services is in the process of selecting a contractor to install passive safety devices for fall protection, such as railings and warning lines. The first group of buildings were selected, and a structural engineering firm has completed the design and load requirements for these systems.”

Representing Longhorn Salsa, recent business grautate Steven Fullbright leads a dance lesson in SAC Ballroom for students in the UT Project on Conflict Resolution Summer Symposium. 

Photo Credit: Jan Ross Piedad | Daily Texan Staff

Editor's Note: Piedad worked as an instructor for the UT Project on Conflict Resolution this summer.

They come like gaggles of geese next to the herd of incoming freshmen over the summer season. With matching shirts or uniforms, groups of younger students can often be seen and heard trekking across campus on the way to workshops and activities. It’s typical for UT facilities to host all kinds of summer camps, helping elementary- to high school-aged students explore their interests away from home. Whether it’s for a few days or a few weeks, on a range of subjects from sports to screenwriting, these experiences are meaningful in helping develop the skills important to these students and exhibit the expertise of our students, staff and faculty.

A warning to some skeptics: it’s not just a recruiting method. Summer camps on campus provide insight into life at UT, and they’re essential to keeping the economy around the University alive during the summer. Austin businesses have much to gain, especially in the off-season.

Kathryn Parke knows that as well as anyone else. After managing the day-to-day operations of private women’s dormitory for over two decades, Parke, administrative director of the Hardin House, has learned how to keep her business thriving even when students are away for the summer.

Previously, the Summer Freshman Admissions program offered incoming freshmen the chance to enroll in courses for the summer session, prior to official admittance into the University. When UT changed its policy in 2009, private dormitories offering summer leases lost their clientele.

“All of a sudden, we didn’t have residents over the summer,” Parke said. “Obviously, for me to keep staff, we developed some summer projects.”

Opening to accommodate guests for graduation each May, Parke transforms one of the six Hardin House buildings into a bed & breakfast. The other buildings then house ladies during freshman orientation sessions in June and July.

The biggest project, however, is the camps.

“Our summer is so varied,” Parke said. “We have reached out to people over the years and now I’ve got some pretty standard returnees that we love.”

This summer, the Hardin House will be a temporary home for cheerleaders, softball players, church groups, and dependents of those deployed in the Navy, as well as a host of international students renting short-term leases. Along with keeping a clean house, Parke says her goal is to keep as much of her staff employed as possible.

“It’s a great group, a real team effort, and they all know how important summers are,” Parke said. “We find it refreshing to see these new faces and see all this wonderment in their eyes when they walk in, because they’re walking into a college dorm and they’re at UT, which is so incredible.”

On campus, the Student Activity Center is on the front lines of University hospitality, for students and visitors alike. Located in the center of campus with a ballroom, auditorium, food court and lots of open seating, the SAC is often the spot for summer camps to frequent. Allyson LaFrance, an event host for the SAC, says the building’s staff is committed to cultivating a “great” environment at all times.

“It’s kind of like when you have guests in your house, you want to make everything perfect and have them feel welcome,” LaFrance said. “At least here at the SAC, that’s what we try to do because we have so many people coming in and out.”

LaFrance is also a student ambassador for the admissions office, working with prospective students and fielding questions about UT Austin.

“From that perspective, too — just try to get them to feel welcome and see that this is an amazing place to go to school,” LaFrance said. “It’s usually their first time on campus, so you want them to feel like this could be their home, that this is a place where they’re invited.”  

Think of the first time you were introduced to UT. Unless there’s a legacy in the family, chances are that a school trip, competition or summer camp brought you to campus first. The best impressions are often made at the beginning. Whether these kids end up ‘going to Texas’ or not, it’s important for us to be open and agreeable to their presence on campus because the best (and worst) PR for a University are its students and alumni.

Recent business graduate Steven Fulbright returned to campus this summer for a few evenings and volunteered to share his talent with a group of impressionable high school students.

“They get to broaden their horizons,” Fulbright said. “There’s just a lot of benefits that come from visiting a college campus. Everything from just people watching, to trying some of the things college campuses offer.”

Representing Longhorn Salsa, Fulbright worked with campers from the UT Project on Conflict Resolution’s summer symposium, teaching the basics of ballroom dance to high school students interested in negotiation and global ethics.

“They got a lot of energy, they really seem to be into it,” Fulbright said. “They paid attention and tried to pick it up. I think it’s always great to have an attentive audience when you’re trying to teach them something.”

Fulbright also took part in an undergraduate panel for the symposium, responding to questions about college life along the lines of “How did you decide your major?” and “What are the best and worst parts about UT?”

For me, the best parts about UT include our campus, our resources, and our community. Sharing those qualities with guests — especially the next generation —  are important to what keeps the legacy active. A critique that can be made about UT campus culture is that our individualism isn’t conducive to convincing visitors and prospective students that we care enough about the people living, working and studying on campus. Go out there and show them something different. Next time you see a group of younger students, wave hello and you’ll likely get a smile back.

Piedad is a journalism junior from San Antonio.

Photo Credit: Chelsea Purgahn | Daily Texan Staff

Students filled the back of the Student Activity Center’s legislative assembly room during three student leadership meetings last week to oppose a proposal that may recommend an increase in tuition next year.

An ad hoc committee including seven student leaders will submit a proposal that may increase tuition by up to 2.6 percent for in-state undergraduate students and 3.6 percent for out-of-state undergraduate students, which works out to increases of $127 and $609 per long semester, respectively. The proposal will not recommend an increase for graduate student tuition.

By Wednesday, the committee must submit a proposal to President William Powers Jr. who will then make his own recommendations to the UT System Board of Regents. The board typically sets tuition for two-year periods every other year and in the past, has announced its decision during its scheduled May meeting. This time, the board will only set tuition for one academic year.

Computer science sophomore Mukund Rathi, who has protested the proposal, said he was disappointed by the process the student leaders used to court student feedback.

“It’s worth pointing out that, while the student leaders have said they want a full discussion of this issue, their only attempt to contact the student body was one email sent out on the Friday before spring break,” said Rathi, who is a former Daily Texan columnist.

Typically, an advisory committee is created as early as August and committee members meet for months to hammer out a proposal based on directives issued by the regents. This year, the regents originally issued a directive forbidding tuition increases for all in-state undergraduate students, so the advisory committee recommended in December to increase tuition for only out-of-state students. On Feb. 25, the regents issued a new directive allowing a maximum of a 2.6 percent increase.

Andrew Clark, Senate of College Councils president who was a member of both the original and newly formed committees, said that, along with the email, the Senate, Student Government and the Graduate Student Assembly used social media as a way to reach out and inform students of the meetings in addition to the email they sent before spring break.

Rathi said he would have preferred to see fliers and announcements made in class to reach out to more students in what became a shortened time frame following the new directives.

“There hasn’t really been a serious attempt made to involve students in this very short time frame of discussion,” Rathi said. “These people on the ad hoc committee should demand a longer time frame from the regents.”

Rathi also said the committee should consider asking the regents to allocate money from the Permanent University Fund to the Available University Fund to offset the cost of tuition. 

The Permanent University Fund is a 137-year-old state endowment that supports the UT and Texas A&M Systems. Though, according to the Texas Constitution, the fund cannot be spent, the fund’s assets are invested and a portion of the profit makes up the Available University Fund. Money from the Available University funds can be used in more flexible ways, including covering university costs.

“It’s supposed to be used to maintain UT-Austin, so there is no constitutional reason that the regents should be withholding those funds,” Rathi said. “The amount they need to allocate from the permanent funds is only a fraction of interest, which is generated on the fund each year.”

Linguistics graduate student Adam Tallman said, even though graduate student tuition will not be considered in the revised proposal, he believes the regents could change tuition every year if students do not resist.

“If you don’t question them and you give them too much leeway, then they could increase graduate students’ tuition,” Tallman said.

The students on the ad hoc committee sent a letter to the Board of Regents on Monday explaining their frustration with the limited time frame they were given to complete the proposal.

“I’m personally very frustrated by the lack of time,” Clark said. “If it is clear that this is not just something UT-Austin is unsatisfied with, we’ll definitely be making sure that opinion is heard loud and clear with the Board of Regents.”

Over the past six years, the Union Building, along with the Student Activity Center, Jester Center, Webb Hall and the Perry-Castaneda Library, has been the site of more criminal trespassing violations than any other building on campus. These buildings are particularly vulnerable because of heavy foot traffic and the likelihood of unattended belongings. 

Photo Credit: Charlie Pearce | Daily Texan Staff

UT officials face a difficult trade-off between the safety and accessibility of campus buildings, according to Bob Harkins, the associate vice president of Campus Safety and Security.

UTPD crime statistics show that, in the past six years, criminal trespassing was reported most frequently in Webb Hall, the Union Building, the Student Activity Center, Jester Center and the Perry-Castaneda Library.

Harkins said most facilities, while not public, are generally open to the public during daytime hours, meaning anyone can access UT buildings when they are open.

“If you live around here, you understand that there are a lot of people that hang out around places,” Harkins said. “Only when they’re in an area they’re not authorized to be in after hours, or they’re creating some type of a nuisance, do we then approach them.”

UTPD Lt. Gonzalo Gonzalez said higher criminal trespass rates for Webb Hall and the Union Building could be a result of the buildings’ locations.

“They’re right next to Guadalupe Street,” Gonzalez said. “I can tell you that’s why I would guess those two would be on the list.”

Harkins said campus buildings attract homeless individuals because they provide clean water, food and a break from the weather.

Buildings such as the Union, the SAC and the PCL are heavily populated with students, who sometimes leave their belongings unattended, making them vulnerable to theft.

“People will tend to lay down personal property and walk away from it, then we’ve got the threat of thefts that we’re trying to balance out all the time,” Harkins said.

Laurie Lentz, communications manager for Campus Planning & Facilities Management, said while criminal trespassing does not frequently interfere with the management of buildings, trespassers occasionally cause disruption for custodial services personnel.

“It’s sort of episodic — things will happen occasionally and it’ll be kind of a mess, but there’s no really consistent pattern with it other than that typically what’s affected are the restrooms,” Lentz said. “Generally, it would be homeless people using UT restrooms to clean up and they may leave paper towel waste on the floor or splash a lot of water around, and then the custodial team will need to come clean it up.”

Campus Safety and Security is working to install electronic access locks in all campus buildings. Currently, 64 of the 238 main campus buildings are equipped with these locks, which require a UT ID card for entry.

“What those do is they give us the capability to provide a safer environment for students that are studying late in small groups or even by themselves,” Harkins said. “We’re moving through campus as quickly as we can to get more funding to be able to do more of the buildings.”

This paper’s editorial board recently published an editorial criticizing Student Government for its upcoming legislation in favor of two-ply bath tissue on the basis that the issue was a trivial cause unworthy of University time or resources. The Texan editorial board, however, was wrong.

When compared to some of SG’s more substantial initiatives — like Invest in Texas or the creation of the Student Activity Center — it may at first be difficult to see why a push for moving from one- to two-ply bath tissue is important.

 But I’m here to tell you that AR 29 is barely about bath tissue. It’s about SG actually listening to students’ concerns and acting on them, no matter how trivial those causes may seem.

“This legislation is a concrete way to show students that SG is actually listening,” said Liam Woolley-MacMath, McCombs representative and legislation co-author. “Students have been complaining about campus bath tissue since at least 2008, and it’s become a disappointment that their needs are ignored year after year.”

And there is clear student support for the change. The Undergraduate Business Council, known as UBC, of which I am a member, took a unanimous vote in favor of the legislation.

“Generally, UBC is extremely critical of legislation and often votes against pieces,” Woolley-MacMath said. “A unanimous ‘yes’ from the official student governing body of McCombs shows that students really do want it.”

The editorial board’s other complaints about the resolution were that the legislation is non-binding, and, if enacted, would increase costs and would not affect all facilities on campus.

It’s obvious that any update to campus facilities would increase costs. But, in this case, the University is open to absorbing them. The legislation included a quote from associate dean for business affairs Susie Brown, in which Brown said that “If [SG] can show enough folks are seeking the change, it will be easier for UT Facilities to justify the cost increase.” Student support, in other words, is vital for securing funding from the UT administration.

Additionally, since some facilities like the SAC are currently equipped with two-ply bath tissue, increasing the two-ply order from one building’s worth to a whole University’s worth should bring in major savings from economies of scale. The University would also enjoy the same savings of reallocated custodial labor time due to less tissue replenishment — higher-quality materials, of course, result in less usage.

As for the board’s complaint about AR 29 being non-binding, Woolley-MacMath said, “As anyone who has ever attended an SG meeting would know, all legislation is non-binding. However, administrators and students respect SG and are reasonable about making changes. And, as the legislation shows, Facility Services is willing to financially support this legislation.”

The board also called out the co-authors for citing UT Facilities Custodial Services for possible financial support when those entities do “not manage or supply bath tissue to auxiliaries of the University, [which are not] addressed by Woolley-MacMath’s legislation.” Auxiliary buildings actually are covered by the legislation, which clearly resolves that “the University of Texas at Austin Student Government recommends a change on a University-wide scale to supplying restrooms with two-ply, environmentally friendly bath tissue.” Though the co-authors of the legislation did not explicitly address costs of changes to the few auxiliary buildings still equipped with one-ply, they generalized cost allocations after seeing that costs of similar changes at Texas Christian University were described by administrators as “negligible.” 

An editorial scoffing at legislation that was from and for the students — from an authoritative board in the official student newspaper, no less — does not benefit anybody. Instead, it makes students uncomfortable with voicing real concerns to their representatives and makes it that much more complicated to secure funding from administration.

Neither of the co-authors asked for publicity when they decided to write that piece of legislation. When TCU’s Student Government made the move to two-ply, they made national news in an extremely positive, albeit amused, light. When our University’s SG tries to quietly make the same student-initiated change, it’s publicly criticized instead. “SG covers student life issues, and this is a student life issue,” Woolley-MacMath said. “We’re just doing our job.”

The people that this legislation could affect the most, however, are not the students but the custodial staff.

“If you ask all of the custodial staff in DHFS, they really prefer where we’re at with the two-ply paper now,” said Rick Early, Division of Housing and Food Services Residential Facilities Operations Director. “It makes their job easier because they only have to change the roll one to two times a week instead of daily.”

The editorial mocked the legislation purely because it was about a detail of facility supplies. Well, that’s exactly what all of our custodial staff dedicates their time to every day — the details of facilities — and by calling the legislation a ‘bullshit cause,’ they are discounting the hard work of all the custodians dedicated to serving students.

“I love my job,” said Custodial Services Manager Andrew Yanez, who supports the legislation. “Our custodians impact students every day with the work they do, and I love seeing the fruits of my efforts while remaining behind the scenes. I want to serve without being in the spotlight.”

It’s about time that we let SG do the same.

 Huynh is a Plan II and business honors sophomore from Laredo.

The Division of Student Affairs announced Monday that Mulugeta Ferede will be the new University Unions executive director, replacing Andy Smith, who resigned from the position in August.

The unions executive director supervises a staff that works directly with students and manages the Texas Union, Student Activity Center, Hogg Auditorium and Student Services Building. The director also oversees Campus Events + Entertainment and business and food services at the Union.

Smith officially retired from the position in August after 27 years with the unions. Three years before his resignation, Smith was criticized for a proposal to close the Cactus Cafe & Bar in the Union.

Smith will continue to work with the unions until the end of the year, at which point Ferede will take over. Gage Paine, vice president for student affairs, said she appreciates Smith’s willingness to work with the unions in the interim period. 

Ferede, who has worked with unions for almost 20 years, will leave his post of eight years as senior associate director of the Illini Union at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

In his time at UT, Ferede said he hopes to build an energetic atmosphere. 

“My interest is really the students,” Ferede said. “I must be a teacher at heart — I’m interested in helping and mentoring students.” 

Paine said she is excited Ferede has experience in working directly with students and managing facilities. 

“He brings a business sense and student engagement sense into the mix,” Paine said. “I have expectations that he’ll bring great energy into our programs. … When a new person comes in, no matter how strong an organization is, a new person sees new things and asks questions that someone who has been there for 27 years doesn’t ask.” 

Dean of Students Soncia Reagins-Lilly said during the interview process Ferede demonstrated qualities she was looking for — including integrity, passion and a student-centered mind-set. 

“I’m hoping that the student body will have the opportunity to get to know him and share their vision of what they would like to see as we continue to build on the excellence of our program and facilities,” Reagins-Lilly said. “I am looking forward to a collaborative process to determine the future growth that includes students at the center.”

Every time I walk to class along the East Mall area from the western part of campus, I cannot help but notice the way the buildings change from the orange tile roofs and tan brick facades of campus’ west side to the modern steel and glass-paneled buildings that populate campus’ eastern half. The sense of familiarity I feel around UT’s historic buildings immediately replaces the insecurity of being in an area that is unknown to me.

Don’t get me wrong, change is inevitable, and in the context of the East Mall, these new buildings are necessary to provide students with more space to study and socialize. However, the new buildings significantly alter campus’ architectural identity and fail to unify the eastern half of campus with its more active and iconic western end.

A unifying architectural style is important for a university because it contributes greatly to the overall aesthetics of its campus landscape and because it physically conveys the social and cultural unity of the campus community. To this end, the people making design decisions regarding campus’ future appearance should seek to strike a balance between the modern aesthetic of East Campus and the more traditional buildings in West Campus.

According to architecture professor Lawrence Speck, the construction of some of the new buildings along the East Mall, such as the Student Activity Center, has been planned since the mid-1990s. The addition of the SAC and other buildings has changed the distribution of students around the campus area — previously most student activity was centered around the Main Mall. This indirectly encourages students to experience different parts of our campus.

However, the newer buildings look out of place on the East Mall. For example, the Bernard and Audre Rapoport (BRB) building, located on the south side of the East Mall, awkwardly contrasts with the SAC; their close proximity makes it feel like the SAC engulfs the BRB. The presence of the Liberal Arts Building and the Gates Computer Science Complex, with their modern architectural styles, unbalances the area. 

Yet the transformation of East Campus is only just beginning, according to Speck. The construction of a medical school building in the east side of the campus, along with a few other major projects that have yet to be approved, will pull students further east. These projects, Speck says, are important, since they will house facilities that are necessary for student and faculty research. These new facilities will help to strengthen UT’s status as one of the top ranking universities in research in the United States.

However, a question still remains: Will these projects create a more unified architectural landscape on campus? East Campus will never be able to compete with West Campus’ signature architectural style. Nonetheless, individuals and authorities who are responsible for UT’s campus planning should put more emphasis on preserving the University’s identity in every new campus building, so that the spirit of our alma mater will be visibly present no matter where you are on campus.

Syairah is an economics sophomore from Rawang, Malaysia.

Despite cloudy skies and light rain, 80 students marched from the Student Activity Center to the Capitol’s North Steps to keep UT competitive, safe and affordable. 

Coordinated by the Senate of College Councils, Student Government and the Graduate Assembly, the demonstration was a culminating event for the Invest in Texas campaign, a student-run, nonpartisan organization intended to champion for the student body during the 83rd Legislative Session.

A press conference followed the march in which state Sen. Judith Zaffirini, D-Laredo, a member of the Senate Committee on Higher Education, and state Rep. Dan Branch, R-Dallas, the chair of the House Higher Education Committee, praised students for their involvement and stressed the importance of investing in higher education. According to Invest In Texas, for every $1 the state invests in UT, $18 is generated for the Texas economy.

“Funding has to be improved,” Zaffirini said. “The key to lower tuition is higher appropriations. It is wise, just and good to invest in Texas.”

In addition to affordability and improving levels of financial aid funding, speakers at the event discussed UT’s campus gun policy and admissions policy.

Student Government President Horacio Villarreal, who will be inaugurated Tuesday night, gave a short statement prior to entering the Capitol. 

“Because UT is such a large school it’s really important we mobilize students,” Villarreal said. “We’re only one mile from the Capitol and it’s crucial we make our presence.”

After the press conference, students witnessed the official proclamation of Invest in Texas Legislative Day and visited various government officials to lobby for student concerns.

Melissa Dunn, supply chain management senior and curriculum committee member, said the event was a small way to make a difference.

“These are all things I really care about,” Dunn said. “I’m passionate about education policy, and I’m going to be participating in Teach for America. So, Invest in Texas fits right in there.”

Business and history sophomore Miriam Petsch volunteered to help lead students to the Capitol as well as administer information packets.

“Education is my niche of politics that I dabble in,” Petsch said. “With prices soaring all over campus and not enough grants being distributed, the issue needs to be addressed. If we don’t make UT affordable, we threaten its diversity.“

The general faculty meeting to vote on a fall break proposal on Monday will now be held in the Hogg Memorial Auditorium instead of the Student Activity Center auditorium.

At least 366 voting faculty members must be present Monday to vote on the fall break proposal, which would give students and faculty two days off near the end of October beginning next fall.

The special meeting was set after 59 faculty members petitioned in opposition to the proposal, forcing a full faculty vote after the Faculty Council initially voted in favor of it in January. Only 25 petitions were needed to call the meeting.

Many professors expressed concerns about losing class time for required labs in natural science classes, which might require class restructuring or less lab time. The current proposal would also push the start of classes two days earlier, to Aug. 25.