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Regents Approve China Study,
Student Center Plans

Sam Houston State University students will be studying next summer in a castle and a fortress in Italy and in Shanghai, China.

The university's board of regents approved those summer program sites during a regular quarterly meeting held Thursday and Friday in Beaumont. In other business, the board approved actions involving the expenditure of more than $10.8 million.

The classes in Italy will be in political science and sociology, and will be held at Pontremoli and Aulla with research trips to Florence, Pisa, LaSpecia, Genoa and Massa-Carrara. Classes will be held in the Pontremoli 14th century medieval castle and in the Aulla 16th century fortress.

The three week program in China will be offered by the College of Criminal Justice in cooperation with the University of Illinois's Office of International Criminal Justice in Chicago and the Shanghai Law College. The China connection was established more than 10 years ago by the Chicago school.

Richard Ward, dean of the Sam Houston State College of Criminal Justice and former executive director of the Chicago program, said the courses in China will focus on comparative criminal justice, with an emphasis on legal development and the justice system, and students will also be exposed to language and cultural activities.

The program coordinator in the United States will be Ward, who has visited China more than 50 times as a consultant and trainer in the areas of human rights and law enforcement. Students and faculty from throughout the United States as well as Sam Houston State University are expected to participate.

The largest of the construction/renovation projects on which action was taken was the $10.8 million Lowman Student Center renovation. Preliminary plans prepared by the architectural firm of Graeber, Simmons & Cowan of Austin were approved, with additional steps to follow including approval of final plans and selection of a contractor.

The project also faces review by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating board, and actual renovation is not expected to begin until at least the 2000 fall semester. Several options are still under consideration to minimize disruptions.

The regents also approved the employment of F.E.U.L.S. Facility Engineering of Austin to design renovations for the Smith-Hutson Business Building's Mafrige Auditorium. The project will update electrical and communications components and replace air handlers.

Also approved was the employment of CTC Engineering of Huntsville to design the renovation and repair of roofs on three campus buildings--Newton Gresham Library, Farrington Building and Rather Communications Building--at an estimated cost of $268,000.

The board also approved the issuance of purchase orders for $355,000 in new furniture and appliances for White Hall, which has been under renovation since spring 1999 and is expected to be completed by summer 2000 for use in the 2000 fall semester.

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SHSU Media Contact: Frank Krystyniak
November 5, 1999
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