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The Weekly Blab 5.19

The Weekly Blab

Volume 5, Issue 19—January 18, 2011


What a Week!

Last week was the shortest workweek (other than vacation time) I’ve ever had in 30 years of teaching, what with four snow days and the Friday being a late opening.  Good gravy, has it really been 30 years?  Well, it won’t be until August.  The weather closings have required us to change some dates.  I’ve sent these out in a separate email, but here they are in case you missed them the first time:


  • Drop/Add: Until Wednesday, January 19th
  • Residual Checks Issued: By Wednesday, January 26th
  • Engagement Grades Due: Thursday, Feb. 3
  • Mid -Term Grades Due: Monday, Feb 28
  • Last Day to Withdraw: Friday, March 4
  • Spring Break: March 7 (as currently)
  • Last Day of Classes: April 28 (as currently)


Last Week’s Happenings…

There really weren’t any…


Coming Up This Week…

This coming week, we’ll have two events I’d like to remind everyone of.  First, at 6:00 PM on Tuesday January 18 in the Student Theatre, we have the International Film Series movie “Rabbit Proof Fence”, presented by yours truly.  This is a really great movie about one of the most disturbing policies of the Australian government in the first half of the 20th Century, namely separating “half caste” (mixed race) children from their Aboriginal mothers to train them for a life in society (i.e., as maids and domestics).  It follows the true story of three girls, two sisters and a cousin all under 14, who escape and try to reunite with their mother.  All they know is that she is somewhere along Australia’s 1500 mile long rabbit-proof fence that divides the continent in half.  The movie won Best Film at the 2002 Australian Film Institute Awards (and has a soundtrack by Peter Gabriel).


On Thursday, January 20, at 1PM in room H-255, we have the first of the open forums on the proposed Academic Integrity Policy.  The faculty and student government have voted to affirm the new Honor Code.  The proposed policy (and everything else related to the work of the ad-hoc committee) is available online at the Honor Code web page.  I hope to see all interested parties there.


Desegregation in Georgia

As many of you know, this year marks the 50th anniversary of the desegregation of the University of Georgia, and Jeff Orr and I will be giving a talk on the 25th at UGA called “The Rest of the Story”, namely about what happened in the other universities within the USG, with a special focus on SPSU.


While doing some research for the presentation, I came across several things that are indicative of how there’s often more to the story.


  • UGA was not the first university in Georgia to desegregate.  Who was?  You’ll have to attend the talk, or solve this week’s trivia quiz to find out.
  • In 1938, the total USG budget was in excess of $1.5 million.  The budget for the three black colleges in the USG (Albany State, Fort Valley State, and Georgia State [now Savannah State] was $65,000 (4.3%), less than any other segregated state except Arkansas.
  • In 1938, Georgia had a total of 78 high schools (33 unaccredited) for black students in its 159 counties.
  • In an earlier controversy dealing (in part) with desegregation (the Cocking Affair, 1943), SACS stripped the white universities and colleges of their accreditation due to gross interference of then governor Talmadge into the Board of Regents.  Stand-up move by SACS to have left the accreditation of the black colleges intact?  No—SACS didn’t accredit any black colleges in Georgia until 1957, so there was no accreditation to remove.
  • In 1959, five years after Brown v. Board of Education, the USG acquired Armstrong College, a segregated junior college in Savannah only a few miles from Savannah State, and there were plans to create a white junior college in Albany.
  • UGA did desegregate in early 1961.  End of the story?  By Fall1968, seven years later, the black enrollment at UGA was only 72 out of 14,360 (0.5%).


Last Week’s Trivia Challenge

Last week’s topic was snow, and the winner was Dean Jeff Ray, with 4.5 correct.  Here are the answers:

  1. What unlikely named group had a hit song named Snow (Hey Oh)? The Red Hot Chili Peppers
  2. John Snow (1813-1858) was a pioneer in what biological area? Epidemiology and Anesthesiology.
  3. Who did the voice of Snow White in the original Disney animated movie?  Adriana Caselotti.
  4. Where is Snowdonia National Park?  Wales, United Kingdom
  5. If you hike in the mountains in the summer, you will often see pink patches on the snow banks, often called “watermelon snow”.  What causes this?   (No looking it up, please!)  An algae (Chlamydomonas nivalis)


This Week’s Trivia Challenge

This week’s topic is desegregation in Georgia.  The first with the most takes the prize.


  1. What was the name of the landmark Supreme Court case that called for desegregation of schools?
  2. Who were the first two black students to attend UGA?
  3. In what year did SPSU desegregate?
  4. In what year did SPSU pass the 1000 black student enrollment milestone?  It was the same year we passed the 1000 female student milestone.
  5. What was the first university in Georgia to desegregate?  (Hint—it wasn’t UGA)