Heard on the Mall

Biden on binge drinking

Calling it "one of the most important issues facing America's college campuses," U.S. Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr., AS '65, joined President David P. Roselle at a news conference this spring to discuss a national legislative initiative urging colleges and universities across the nation to become more aggressive in combating the problems of binge drinking.

Senate Resolution 192-the Collegiate Initiative to Reduce Binge Drinking, which Biden introduced in the Senate-outlines six actions to help curb binge drinking. Delaware Sen. William V. Roth Jr. is a co-sponsor of the resolution.

"What has been done here at Delaware should be replicated throughout the country," Biden said, noting that his resolution resulted from a conversation with Roselle.

Commending Roselle for his leadership on the issue, Biden said, "It is somewhat ironic that I'm the sponsor of this legislation, when the largest and most prestigious University in my state has already put into effect every single thing that the Congress is urging the rest of the colleges in the United States of America to do."

Specifically, the resolution calls on universities to:

Biden's resolution was passed as part of the Education Reauthorization Act, an amendment to the Higher Education Act.

-Beth Thomas

Livin' on campus

The number of applications for on-campus housing is up by 519 over last year, and all but 80 of the 3,800 applications for housing were submitted on the web.

David Butler, executive director of Housing and Conference Services, said housing personnel had expected a drop of about 100 applications because of stronger enforcement of alcohol policies within the residence halls.

How the cookie crumbles

Daniel McDowell baked about 100 batches of chocolate chip cookies in his senior year-all in the name of science, of course.

The animal and food science major worked with Y. Martin Lo, assistant professor of food processing and engineering, to find a way to make soy flour more appealing.

With an $8,000 grant from the Delaware and Maryland Soybean Boards and the collaboration of UD faculty and Cooperative Extension, McDowell worked on the project to lift the legume's public image and create a microwave-ready, soy flour cookie dough that would appeal to American consumers.

"We've come a long way," McDowell, AG '98, says. "One of the things we've discovered is that the appeal is all in the texture. Whether the cookies are made with white flour, whole wheat flour or soy flour, people like them if they like the texture. Some people like chewy; others like crispy."

Lo says he thinks soy-based cookies can find a market niche, especially because soy-based products are more nutritional, provide more amino acids and contain a group of compounds that may help reduce the risk of cancer.

The fashion people

You may have seen UD students wearing the very latest fall fashions in the August issue of Teen People, a new magazine for teens from the editors of People.

The magazine's "fashion van" came to campus in April, equipped with make-up and hair stylists and full of fall fashions and accessories. Adhering to the magazine's policy to feature real teens instead of professional models, Teen People staff selected students for the fashion shots from among those who gathered at the van. MTV also was on hand, covering the event for an August back-to-school broadcast.

UD was chosen because of fashion director Haley Hill's memories of a campus visit during her college years, and from the recommendations of UD alums who work in New York's fashion and publishing industries.

The chosen few models climbed aboard the Teen People van and each selected an outfit from items that will be on the market this fall. After professional make-up and hair styling by Teen People staff, the students accompanied a fashion photographer to locations the staff had scouted out earlier in the day.

Because the magazine wanted to feature clothes, creative director Deirdre Koribanick explained that the background for the shots was kept to a minimum. "This whole campus scene is so great, but we have such limited space and we want to make sure people look at the clothes," she said.

-Beth Thomas

Concrete canoe makes splash

Yes, it's true. Concrete floats. Just ask members of the UD student chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), who placed third overall and came home with four trophies from this year's annual Concrete Canoe Competition, sponsored by ASCE and held in April on Peace Valley Lake, near Doylestown, Pa.

Sea Biscuit, named after a racing nag in a Three Stooges movie, was a sleek 170 pounds. Students worked for months experimenting with different batches of lightweight concrete before coming up with the right mix-a fiber-reinforced mixture including Kevlar(TM), Spectra(TM) and nylon.

They made a fiberglass mold using a traditional canoe. Through a method called scrimping-a process by which epoxy resin is sucked through a mold by means of a pressure vacuum-they poured in the concrete, reinforcing it with wire mesh and carbon fibers and using foam bulkheads. The mold was removed and revealed a traditional-looking concrete canoe, more than 18 feet long and ready for racing.

"Although Drexel came in first and Penn State second, as they have for several years, we made a much better showing than in other years and definitely offered them strong competition," faculty adviser Kevin Folliard, assistant professor of civil engineering, said.

Team members included Robert Harbeson, chapter co-president, EG '98, Dan Bartlett, EG '98, Newark, Del., Meagan Coar, EG '98, Georgetown, Del., Damon Drummond, EG '99, Lanham, Md., Dan Feinblum, EG '99, Annapolis, Beth Kenderdine, EG '98, Plainfield, N.J., Jason Kyler, EG, '98, Kimberton, Pa., Alyson Radel, EG '98, Wilmington, Del., Joy Ressler, EG '99, North Hampton, Pa., Rob Schimmel, EG '98, Newark, Del., Gary Wenczel, EG 2001, Newark, Del., and Ed Starr, a continuing education student from Newark, Del.

The ASCE student chapter is selling Sea Biscuit T-shirts to offset the canoe-building expenses. Anyone wishing to order one may contact Ressler at (302) 369-6476.

-Sue Swyers Moncure

Til the cows come home

Cows who feel at home on the fields of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources in Newark will be joined by some new friends this fall when UD and Rutgers University combine their milking herds. At the same time, UD's heifers will be going across the Delaware River to a new home at Cook College on the Rutgers University campus in New Brunswick, N.J.

Trailblazing alumna

Velda Jones-Potter, EG '79, manager of contract manufacturing for the DuPont Co., received a Trailblazer Award in February from the Agenda for Delaware Women for enhancing the visibility and stature of professional women in the state. The first African-American woman to graduate from the University with an engineering degree, Jones-Potter daily manages DuPont's $20 million, asset-based manufacturing operations in the U.S. and Canada. From 1995-1997, as an executive-on-loan, she served as the city of Wilmington's first female director of finance. While there, she aggressively solicited past-due water accounts, oversaw the collection of $234,000 in delinquent parking tickets and increased city revenues by $1.3 million. Jones-Potter, who grew up in Wilmington's Riverside area and attended Wilmington public schools, was one of the first five high school students chosen 22 years ago for UD's Forum to Advance Minorities in Engineering (FAME).

Dress for success

During Career Week in April, seniors were introduced to job search strategies in a variety of fields, resume writing and interviewing techniques. A coalition of campus groups also sponsored Career Extravaganza this spring, two programs on appropriate make-up and fashions. Here, Mitsuko Clemmons, a graduate student in the College of Human Resources, Education and Public Policy, models career wear for professionals. Cosponsors of the extravaganza were the Black Student Union, Graduate Student Association, Alpha Kappa Alpha and Alpha Chi Omega sororities and Sigma Chi fraternity.