Monday, April 30, 2007

In Memoriam: Ralph Spencer

Ralph D. Spencer, the designer and author of the SHSU Master Plans, which have been implemented for present and future growth at the University, died April 29.

Spencer attended Tarleton State University and Texas Tech University, where he earned his Bachelor of Architecture degree in 1951; he later practiced his career in Lubbock, Austin, and Huntsville, Texas. Over his 56 years of practice, he designed and completed many educational and institutional projects across the State of Texas, including, for Sam Houston State University, the Lee Drain Building, Evans English Building, Music II, and the Farrington Science Building renovations.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Baseball Stadium Naming Ceremony

Sam Houston Athletics will have the formal naming ceremony for Don Sanders Stadium this Saturday, April 28. Following a special pregame dedication ceremony, Don Sanders, the Houston entrepreneur and philanthropist who has donated $1 million to establish an endowment fund to enhance the baseball program at Sam Houston State, will throw out the first pitch at 2 p.m.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Today@Sam: Former ‘Country Campus’ To Receive Historical Marker

A ceremony to place a historical marker on the property once owned by Sam Houston State University and known as the Country Campus is scheduled for 2 p.m. Friday, April 27.

The marker will commemorate the site as one of the first prisoner of war camps built in the United States During World War II. The event is sponsored by the Texas and Walker County historical commissions.

The plaque that will be placed at 3299 Highway 19 reads: "Camp Huntsville was one of the first prisoner of war (POW) camps built in the U. S. during the war. On this site on September 18, 1942, construction was completed. Built to house 3,000 POWs, the camp had more than 400 buildings. The first POWs, members of Germany's Afrika Korps, arrived in the spring of 1943. By October of that year the camp's population peaked at 4840. As a large base POW camp it administered eight branch camps.

“Late in the war, Huntsville's status changed and it became a branch camp for Camp Hearne. In September 1945, the camp's German POWs were sent to Camp Hearne in preparation for the arrival of a small group of Japanese POWs before their return to Japan.

"The camp closed on January 5, 1946. Later that year the government transferred more than 800 acres and 405 buildings to Sam Houston State Teachers College for use as a Country Campus."

The property is now privately owned.

In the event of rain, the ceremony will be held at the Country Campus Baptist Church.

Today@Sam: Reception To Officially Open Visitor, Alumni Center

The Visitor Center and Alumni Relations offices will show off their new home on Friday, April 27 during the Visitor and Alumni Center grand opening and ribbon cutting ceremony at 4 p.m.

University president Jim Gaertner, Alumni Relations director Charlie Vienne and Visitor Center director Joey Chandler will speak at 4:30 p.m., when the ribbon cutting ceremony with the Huntsville-Walker County Chamber of Commerce will be held.

The come-and-go reception, which will be held until 5:30 p.m., will include ice cream and other refreshments, music and an appearance by Sammy the Bearkat.

In addition, the first 300 people will receive free gifts.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

On-campus Graffiti Trend

As you’d expect, being passionate about the buildings of Sam Houston State University means you aren’t thrilled about graffiti appearing on said buildings, as noted in the Houstonian:
The Huntsville Police Department has recently become aware of a noticeable trend of on-campus property damage. The mischief has taken place primarily in the form of graffiti, drawn on several different buildings.

On March 31, according to a press release from the University Police Department, an officer was dispatched to Baldwin House in reference to graffiti that had been spray painted on an exterior wall.

Then on April 1, an officer was dispatched to the Lee Drain Building in reference to "criminal mischief," which also ended up being a piece of graffiti painted on the walkway between the Lee Drain Building and the Farrington Building.

Finally on April 4, while patrolling in the 2300 block of Avenue M, an officer observed that graffiti had been spray painted on a door at Holleman Field, a baseball field currently used for SHSU Club Sports.

According to Captain Kevin Morris of the University Police Department, the graffiti found has included "the anarchy symbol," and the phrases "This is Art" and "Before I Awake."

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Dangerous Crosswalk Stirs Up Controversy

One of the more unattractive intersections on campus is the interchange of Bowers Boulevard and Avenue I. This article by Linda Wollard from the April 3 edition of the Houstonian highlights the crosswalk a block west (between Academic Building Three and the Science Building) but discusses the road in whole.

With one major student-hazard area located in between the Forensic Science and AB3 buildings, a crosswalk is present, with of course a yield sign, where students become unsuspecting target practice by the motorists that speed by. According to Mark Shiflet, Safety Coordinator for SHSU, this particular road is not owned by the university, but by the city of Huntsville. Shiflet says this area is also not up to code since no stop sign is present.

"If there is a crosswalk, there is supposed to be a stop sign or a light," Shiflet said. "This area is not permissible by law." Shiflet says that a few of the roads on campus that are usually dead-end roads are owned by the university while majorities are owned by the city.