{News Briefs}

UAA voters turn out in high numbers

At UAA, voter turnout was high Election Day and by 1 p.m., almost 430 students, faculty or staff had voted. According to the UAA Web site, registrars at the Student Union reported up to 30 people standing in line at one time or another waiting to cast their ballot. About half were first-time voters. Efforts by UAA organizations to encourage students to register and vote proved successful.

Regents approve budget request

The University of Alaska Board of Regents approved a request last week to find $242.7 million in state money for the university’s operating budget, according to a recent UA news release. If the money is found, it would increase state support of the university by five percent. The meeting, held at UAA, also included a proposal to ask the state for $118.8 million for capital projects next year. According to University President Mark Hamilton, the University of Alaska has not received the capital support it has needed in recent years.

New director of public affairs named

According to a recent UA news release, former newspaper reporter Kate Ripley has been named director of public affairs for the University of Alaska statewide system. Ripley is an eighth generation Alaskan and has experience with the press as a reporter and editor at both the Fairbanks Daily News Miner and the Juneau Empire. She received a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Montana and is now studying for a master’s degree in northern studies at UAF. Ripley is married to Brian O’Donoghue, an assistant professor of journalism at UAF. Ripley took over the public affairs post Nov. 1.

Campus to participate in Community Campaign

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UAA will team up with United Way for the annual United Way/Alaska Community Share drive to collect donations for charities and community members in need. Donation forms are available on campus and online. This year’s monetary goal is $60,000, 10 percent more than what was collected in 2003. Contributors can review a list of 93 agencies and charities to give support. The campaign runs until Dec. 10.