{News Briefs}

UAA student housing costs to rise in August

UAA housing has announced an increase in housing prices to start fall 2005. Templewood residents will pay $325 more a semester and other residents will pay $250 more. The increase will help balance UAA’s budget, and the money will also be used to maintain programs and facilities, such as Residence Hall Association programs, the Commons fitness center and restoration projects. A staff member may be hired to get students more involved on campus and make them feel more at home in campus housing. For rates, visit http://edit.uaa.alaska.edu/housing/prospective/rates.cfm.

Finalists for academic affairs job visit campus

Three finalists for the vice president of academic affairs position visited UAA this week and last to speak and answer questions from students, faculty and staff. Rob Sheehan, Lee Alley and Deborah Walter are finalists in the search for the statewide vice president position. The vice president maintains and implements University of Alaska academic plans, student policies and procedures, among other duties. The chosen candidate will replace Craig Dorman, who has been serving as interim vice president.

Students plan to rebuild tsunami-zone schools

UAA’s Architectural and Engineering Technology Club will send 18 students to Sri Lanka in May to help rebuild schools destroyed by the Dec. 26 tsunami. Club members are raising money for the trip by sponsoring hot dog, chili dog and spaghetti feeds, Krispy Kreme Doughnuts sales, and raffling away a car. For more information, call the club’s adviser, Bob Maxwell, at 748-2551. The club meets every Tuesday night at 8 p.m. at the University Center, Room 123.

UAA joins the social security debate

Students, staff, faculty and community members met March 29 in the Consortium Library to discuss Social Security issues among different generations. Attendees discussed how starting in 2017 the program will pay more in benefits than it will take in through taxes and how the U.S. government spent whatever surplus money the program collected instead of saving it for the program’s future. While attendees agreed something needed to be done to Social Security, they disagreed about the best way to fix the program, the purpose of the program and whether the program should or could be fixed at all. The event was co-sponsored by Sen. Lisa Murkowski’s office, Commonwealth North, and the UAA Economics Club.

Statewide Japanese speech contest winners

Several UAA students won awards at the second annual statewide Japanese speech contest, which was held at UAA March 26. Michael Dickson, a Japanese major at UAA, won first place in the advanced division for his speech, “A Cross-Cultural Experience.” In the same division, Chris H. Li, an eighth grader who takes Japanese classes at UAA, was awarded an honorable mention for her speech called “Media.” Japanese majors Adam Lear and Seon-Hee Park won second place in the group-skit division for their skit, “A Present.” Rachael Uponen, also a Japanese major, received an honorable mention in the intermediate division for her speech, “My Little Smidy.” Last year’s contest was in Fairbanks.

Conference combats underage drinking

UAA and the Alaska Federation of Natives hosted the Underage Drinking Prevention Summit with other state agencies last week in an effort to better understand the scope of underage drinking. The summit was held at the Hilton Hotel on March 30 and 31 and included traditional dance group performances and bands. Members of the community joined to learn more about the problem of underage drinking and prevention efforts during the two-day summit.