Thursday, November 03, 2005

Good Luck and Safe Travels

I just wanted to wish everyone who's going this weekend to have a safe trip to New Orleans. I'm praying that you all feel some of the Tulane magic that I try to impart through this site. Unfortunately, I can't make it this weekend but I'm looking forward to hearing the reports, even from the naysayers! Speaking of naysayers I'm repositing my bout with our favorite one in the comments section (well just my response to his riduculous comment). Hopefully, this will put some kind of end to it.

I hope to hear lots of reports, and I would appreciate any and all emails about your perceptions to When you get return, it would be great if you comment to this post with a little synopsis of your take on the Tulane situation- good or bad.

Again, good luck and safe travels everyone,

Brett Hyman


Blogger Brett Hyman said...

RealityCheck said:

"Maybe this is my hobby, rebutting the rantings of a 21 year old know it all? And as I said above, it doesn't take nearly the time you and everyone else thinks it does. I guarantee, I actually spend less time on this site and mine combined than you do on this one alone."

Nice hobby, realitycheck. I'm sure everyone appreciates a 40 or 50 something trying to beat on a 21 year old (and then admitting to it). Not to mention that sound more like a 17 year old who got his prom date stolen from him. You are never correct in anything that you presume or say. Your comments are nothing but speculations and manifestations of your own mind that are empirically defeated time and time again. At least I do proper research and post my perspectives with support from factual information.

The fact that you claim to spend less time on our sites than I is not just laughable, but it’s also a physical impossibility. I post once week, IF I can find the time, and maybe comment once or twice whenever you going on an illogical rant. YOU, on the other hand, post at least twice a DAY. It's simply ridiculous to make the claim that you spend less time on this site (and probably your own) than the entire Tulane community, combined.

It seems that the people who read my site have spoken in unison. Although you have now become comic relief for all of us (and I'll probably miss you when you're gone), I'm still offended that you chose to attack me personally, again. So, please go back to your own site and stop polluting mine with your belligerent ranting and irrational analysis.

Thanks in advance for your compliance and enjoy your stay in New Orleans!

3:16 AM  
Blogger MMOSS said...

It has been my intention to read this blog and to be informed as well as to be encouraged by the many things being said by Brett and the responses from a wide spectrum of concerned students, parents, teachers, administrators, and individuals concerned with Tulane and the City of New Orleans. I can accept the fact and have previously commented on the fact that things have not gone as planned , that mistakes have occurred, that miscommunications and misunderstandings have taken place and that problems exist and will remain unresolved for quite some time. Nonetheless, I believe that the only way to overcome the terrible consequences of the hurricane is to exhibit resolve, courage, tenacity, cooperation, and understanding amongst ourselves as human beings as well as concerned parents trying to help our children grow and understand the realities of life which extend far beyond a cloistered campus environment. That is why I, speaking as a parent, am excited about letting my son go back to Tulane as he wishes, and hopes he takes the special opportunity to help build or re-build a legacy that he will probably not have available to him at any other campus.
I respect that many parents are scared of the problems and issues that will be prevalent when Tulane re-opens in the Spring. Those concerns are not to be treated lightly and I share them with all parents. I do urge every parent to look at the opportunities that our children have to obtain significant life experiences dealing with the problems in the aftermath of a natural disaster. The challenge of taking part in the revitalization of a renowned university and a legendary city should be a risk worth taking.

Of course, this is one person's perspective and if it smacks of optimism Reality Check, so be it. I can tolerate constructive criticism, but your's is one of unremitting denigration. I once criticized Brett for asking you to stay off the blog, but must now support his latest response to you in asking you to stay off the blog if you haven't got anything of value to add other than sarcasm. You encourage irrational and primarily negative perspectives to parents and students that are unnecessary. I pity what your daughter is probably being subjected to regarding her ability to make a decision. I believe, unlike you, that most of the people involved in the decision making process of choosing whether or not to return to Tulane are intelligent enough to make a rational decision based on their own good logical reasons and discernment of factual reality.

I encourage all readers and writers on this blog to ignore RC's comments and not waste your precious time in responding to his verbally abusive rants. RC craves attention and he is pulling that from all of us with his provocative comments and mean spirited responses. Like people of his kind, ignoring him will result in his crawling back under the rock he originally emerged from. I know that this will be the last time I address RC in any way regardless of his probable "et tu Brutus" response to this posting.

To all readers and to Brett, try to stay open minded, stay focused and be positive. While acknowledging the harsh reality of the problems, there is a lot to be encouraged about regarding Tulane University. We all have much to be thankful for.

10:15 AM  
Blogger tulane_muslim said...

RC provides a necessary balance to the blog. Though many may despise him, he is the yin to your yang. You must embrace the dark as well as the light, no matter how much you may not like it.

10:25 AM  
Blogger BootNRally said...

If RC would be so obliged to tell me wheres hes stayin this weeked I will 'discuss' tulane with him appropriately.

11:10 AM  
Blogger MM said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

11:18 AM  
Blogger MM said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

11:20 AM  
Blogger RealityCheck said...

BootNRally said...

"If RC would be so obliged to tell me wheres hes stayin this weeked I will 'discuss' tulane with him appropriately."

No problem. Email me your name and we'll arrange to meet.

12:45 PM  
Blogger RealityCheck said...

Brett said:

"The fact that you claim to spend less time on our sites than I is not just laughable, but it’s also a physical impossibility. I post once week, IF I can find the time, and maybe comment once or twice whenever you going on an illogical rant. YOU, on the other hand, post at least twice a DAY. It's simply ridiculous to make the claim that you spend less time on this site (and probably your own) than the entire Tulane community, combined."

Brett, you don't know what is physically possible or impossible when it comes to the web. I don't expect you to trust me when I say, I don't actually come to this blog, but I don't.

If anyone wants more information on how this is done, feel free to email me.

And I said I said that I guarantee that I actually spend less time on this site and mine combined than YOU do on this one alone.

12:50 PM  
Blogger Brett Hyman said...

I think realitycheck just claimed he DOESNT come to this blog...

1:26 PM  
Blogger greenwave said...

maybe he has his secretary check and comment on all of our posts. that might be what he means when he says he doesn't visit this site.

that would be the only way i could see that possible because he criticizes several posts at a time line by line.

3:28 PM  
Blogger MM said...

An interesting article

"First-year visiting students circulated a petition, garnering over 100 signatures, to allow them to transfer to the University before earning 24 credits."

While not all of the students who signed the petition are going to transfer, thats a lot of people (btw it isn't really clear if they are Tulane students that signed it). Does anyone know how many TU and Loyola students are at UVA?

6:22 PM  
Blogger probablynevergonnapostagain said...

When you think about it, is it really a stretch to think that realitycheck doesn't spend much time on his postings? His primary method of argument is simply selecting quotes and negating them. Generally speaking, this is an easy and cheap form of argument, one that would not garner very good grades in most rhetoric classes =/

7:32 PM  
Blogger tuvadad said...

There are 140+ Tulane students at UVA this fall, according to e-mail sent to faculty earlier this semester. A few have since dropped out.

It is important to note that the petition may have over 100 signatures, but those signatures are of all students attending UVA, and less than a half-dozen are signatures of actual Tulane visiting students. The rest are signatures from supportive UVA students. 100 isn't that impressive.

The author of the petition, btw, has received a barrage of hateful e-mail from Tulane students who disagree with the petitioners. Interestingly, the author allegedly had applied originally to UVA's incoming class and had not been offered admission.

All the petition really says is let's suspend the 24 credit rule to allow admission of mid-term freshman transfers. Likely, it would not offer the desired (?) back door admission to UVA.

In fact, knowing the UVA admin, this is a non-starter, since it seeks to make an exception for one class of students over all others.

I'm not taking a position either way, just adding some background info. Do you really want to switch to a school where an english class on fantasy literature is taught in a 140 student lecture class? UVA may be great in many ways -- but it is not likely to fit the desires of a typical Tulane student, IMHO.

7:16 AM  
Blogger MM said...

no, i agree i was just pointing the article out. I think you're right about them not being TU students.

12:37 PM  
Blogger Tulaneparent said...

I haven't checked in here for a while. I have yet to sort out all the bills coming in from both Tulane and the school that my son is at now. We were billed tuition and fees, and I assume it will sort itself out eventually. I noticed that Cowen said statements were being mailed this week, so we may be able to start that process now.

More importantly now is the future. I just read that they laid off half of the professors. That was from a comment on this blog. Is that correct? Is there a public statement from Tulane on that? On the chat session transcript from 10/20 Cowen said that all the professors would be back.

I am concerned if this is true. I wonder what impact this will have on the quality of the classes offered? If a student commits to the university and goes back in the Spring, what kinds of classes will really be offered. We've experienced problems at Tulane in the past where courses listed in the catalog were really only offered every couple of years. If the classes aren't filled by the time classes start, they'll lay off more professors.

I was suggesting my daughter look at Tulane in the future, as it was such a great experience for my son, but the heart of the school lies in the students and professors. If half of both populations are gone, then what is left? How can I assure her that the quality of the education for her would be equal to what my son had received before the storm. Will the advisors be as caring and concerned as they had been, or will their staff be cut and the ones left overwhelmed with students? She is interested in the sciences, and I seriously wanted her to look at the school despite the problems with the city, but now I'm not so sure.

5:07 PM  
Blogger linda said...

No, they did not fire half the professors. Read the website and you will see that adjunct and part-timers are the ones who were let go, but not the professors so all the full-time faculty are still here and will be teaching classes. It will actually be a much better experience to have the professors in the classroom and not be taught by non-full-time people.

5:52 PM  
Blogger Ray said...

"If a student commits to the university and goes back in the Spring, what kinds of classes will really be offered."

The schedules up. You can check for yourself. All of my classes were up there.

8:08 PM  
Blogger perturbed said...

20% of the faculty was part-time. I don't have a count on the adjuncts and visiting profs.

Any guarantee they will not drop classes that are under-enrolled from the schedule? I think not.

7:08 AM  
Blogger Jenny said...

I went back this weekend and my room was taped shut and had a sign warning me not to enter because there was mold. My things were in boxes in the parking garage, and no one seemed to have any idea how long they had been there. My point is, my mom had called frequently to check on my room and they reassured her that my room was fine, no damage, nothing. I'm really annoyed that the college didn't think to call people and let them know they wouldn't be able to see their rooms. Just prepare youself for when you go back, because if you were on a first floor like me, then you might have the same unpleasant experience I did.

BTW, I still want to go back, I'm just really angry that I wasn't informed about my room.

4:15 PM  
Blogger David Quintana said...

I'm a parent of a sophomore architecture student. I also own property in the university area. We are all so fortunate the campus and neighborhood survived so well.

I have been disappointed with so many posts on this log, because (a) too many people want perfect solutions to impossible problems, and (b) too many people want to be "blog stars".

Katrina was simply a disaster, and there is no plan that would have been perfect or close. Disasters happen, and the test is how people respond to them.

Parents and students who want a perfect solution, or a perfect college experience, should not be returning to Tulane. Because there is no way Tulane can provide that perfection.

When you judge Tulane's response, you have to allow for the magnitude of the problem and determine the appropriate judgment. For example, people have inappropriately criticized Tulane for allowing students to buy books Saturday morning, then ordering evacuation that same day. Parents have complained that they are out the book money and Tulane should be doing something about it. This is an example of failing to see the priorities of the situation and what an appropriate response should be.

In short, parents or students who require everything to be perfect in January, as if nothing happened, are going to be disappointed and realistically should consider withdrawal. Because it isn't going to be perfect.

But it will be challenging, interesting, compelling, and a chance to grow as individuals and as a community! It is said that Katrina was the largest disaster in U.S. history and spawned the largest displacement of humanity; it will also be the largest rebuilding and renovation effort in U.S. History! Do you want to be part of it?

My son and his fellow students can't wait (he's already back helping out); we believe this will be a once-in-a-lifetime chance to build ties and bonds and memories, beyond the academic books.

5:37 PM  
Blogger David Quintana said...

We attended the administration's presentation at Tulane on November 6. Here are some points madeby President Cowen and the administration:

1. All but 1 of the full-time faculty members are returning. All have remained on payroll. The rumours of loss of professors is simply not true.

2. Tulane is actively working to find housing for all professors and their families in the community. Tulane also contracted with the nearby Lusher School to help repair Lusher and guarantee K-12 schooling to children of faculty members.

3. Most part-time and assistant teachers either left or were let go. Tulane will be hiring to fill these positions.

4. Ironically, the full-time professors will now be teaching the classes instead of the assistants, graduate students or associates. The adminstration suggested that this should mean that the academic quality of the classes will be higher than before.

5. EPA testing results show the air quality is better now than before the storm--less cars and people are contributing factors. No negative factors to aire quality from storm or flood.

6. All but two buildings will reopen by December.

7. Freshman applications for admission are higher for Fall 2006 than they were for Fall 2005. So there does not appear to be a dropoff in future admissions. Tulane is not decreasing the academic standards for admission.

8. The tuition policy is unchanged. Dr. Whiteside, the head of admissions, stated the obvious financial reality that Tulane would not and could not be crediting back fall tuition if a student went to a less-expensive school. (At least someone said it out loud).

9. 43 members of the admissions staff are going case-by-case through all 13,000 students to make all the necessary adjustments to arrive at the proper and fair tuition balances for fall and spring--since the fall tuition deadline has been extended until march 2006 there is plenty of time and lots of adjustments to be made depending on each student's individual circumstances.

10. Tulane will accept all credits for all coursework taken at another school this fall; all grades will be converted to pass/fail on Tulane's transcripts for this fall. That way there can be no complaints about relative grades, i.e. "Billy went to State U and got easy A's, while I went to a harder school and got C's, now his GPA is higher than mine...".

11. Tulane and the surrounding neighborhood is expected to be safer than before.

12. The Boot is open, and the beer and burgers were great!

5:56 PM  
Blogger tillatumom said...

My daughter said there were a lot of "whiney" parents at the info session this past weekend.
As she is now stilettos on the ground in uptown since wednesday, she reports that the air is cleaner (less traffic) and the streets are quieter. Quarter is pretty busy. She is living without power until her landlord gets her place inspected/repaired and charging her cell phone and showering etc at freinds, whilst living off of non perishables and subway. Frogs(amphibious, not European) had moved into her closet, but they have been evicted. She gloated about the fabulous weather (here is it 45 and raining sideways).
One worrisome note: her landlord is selling and gentrification appears to be emminent, but the lease until May is to be honored as condition of sale. I fear many of the great uptown rental deals that students had will be a thing of the past in the near future.

7:14 PM  
Blogger Melody said...

I went to New Orleans this weekend and it was amazing! Yes, there are trees down, and trash on the sidewalks, etc, but it looks a lot better than what I looks almost normal again (minus the red cups littering broadway). If it wasnt for the trash everything would be perfectly normal, and it doesn't take too long to get that cleaned up. There's no traffic lights working on Clairborn but traffic's perfectly fine and there's stop signs that everyone's obeying. Military presence is everywhere and its nice and safe. The air actually smells a lot better that usual. The media definitely played up the damages and neglected to show how well New Orleans is coming along.

I was expecting it to be half empty, dirty, and chaotic but almost everything was the same. The airport was filled with people (my flight was a full flight). I was suprised at how normal everything was and I even teared up a bit on seeing everything. The traffics a lil less congested but there's plenty of people back in town. TJ Quills, the Boot, Brunos, F&Ms were open (albeit a lil sketchy with the old middle-aged FEMA people and workers). F&M's cheesy fries were delicious and Boot pizza was just as good at 1am as always. Babylon Cafe was open and packed, as was Port of Call. Five Happiness was closed and it looked like the water line was pretty high there :-( but its a Tulane staple so I'm sure it'll be back in no time. Cafe du Monde was open and packed with people, the street performers were back, and the Mississippi River looked beautiful. The weather was amazing.

Yes, some parts are still bad off, but those parts are nowhere that a Tulane student goes to so freshman parents, don't worry about it! There's plenty of cabs and more and more places are opening up every day. Finding out my room got damaged and having to sort through my belongings in boxes did suck (for lack of a better term) but it was the biggest natural disaster in the US. Nothing could have prepared for it. It's all material goods and I don't care if I have to work all winter break, the school year and summer to replace it. I am just so glad I got to see the city I love come back to life and can't wait to see the amazing people at Tulane.

If anything this has made the Tulane community closer since all the negative and bitter people are all transferring out and only those who TRULY love Tulane are staying. They'll never get the chance fall in love with New Orleans..

I cant wait till spring semester. I can't wait for a crawfish boil on the levy, to go down to Frenchman street and listen to some live music, to have a class taught outside on the academic quad because the weather's so beautiful, to order delivery Five Happiness in the dorms during a rainy day with my girls, to walk to class in rainboots, to enjoy Happy Hour with 300 of my closest friends, to hear the words "Omlette, omlette" from the cafeteria ladies in Bruff, to get a package in the mailroom, and heck, I'll even savor going to Howard Tilton library to cram for finals. At least there's free coffee at the Bubble after 8pm to keep me awake.


11:55 PM  
Blogger TheDevilIsInTheDetails said...

For the next hurricane category ; the easy way to keep going.

4:57 AM  
Blogger tuvadad said...

Hey, Jenny -- you are not alone on that score.

My daughter drove 920 miles down, 920 back, in three days, to find that her third floor room in Irby was not accessable. Her stuff is allegedly boxed, but as yet, missing. I know, small potatoes, right? At least she is alive.

Nothing brought that more closely to home than her hitting an animal on her road trip and damaging her car. She fared better than the animal, and the car is fixable.

Aside from not accurately informing students of the status of their rooms, and losing/mishandling personal items, I thought it odd to read so many accounts of parents and students being unable to actually see campus -- which was part of the invite, I thought.

Glad I didn't waste my time.

One 'good news' note, the course offerings are being steadily revised and more classes added!

9:18 AM  
Blogger ncgwmom said...

tuvadad, it's been clear that what you describe would happen with the course listings once the advisors got in touch with students. No surprise there, except to those who are determined to see only the "down side" of things. (And I'm sure some of them will find a way to see something bleak even in that.) Has it occured to anyone that our sons and daughters are among the privileged in that they will come back after most of the hard work is done? Or that Tulane's creating more on-campus social activities can be a very good thing? By January, I think that it will be clear that those who remain have more to be grateful for than they have to complain about.

9:38 AM  
Blogger tuaronres said...

How is the flooding on campus, is it all just 1st floor rooms? I'm going down this weekend and I'm wondering how worried I should be about mold in my 2nd floor aron apartment.

9:55 AM  
Blogger tulane alumni said...

The Houston Chronicle reported in today's paper that Tulane has "cut 243 jobs, or 4 percent of its workforce." Compared to Xavier who "laid off more than half of its faculty and staff," and "Dillard trimmed almost half of its of its employees." Loyola has not laid off anyone. This article does not specify the positions held by those that were laid off at Tulane. However, according to Tulane press releases, I haven't heard of any professors or researchers that have been let go.

Because of this, I don't understand why people cannot get into certain classes or why some are saying the classes they need are not available. Tulane always alternates which classes are offered between Fall and Spring sememsters. I don't think they have totally omitted them from their course offerings permanentaly, I would think they are just sticking with their normal Spring course offerings. The professors are still there to teach the courses. Perhaps the courses that students originally planned taking in the Fall will be offered in the 7 week long semester. Any thoughts?

11:20 AM  
Blogger patty said...

Upper classmen keep talking about how it is normal that cirtain classes are offered in either the fall or the spring, but i think you are forgetting that freshman have classes they have to take freshman year. like our English class. And not all of us will be able to stay in the summer too.

1:21 PM  
Blogger spohmoremom said...

My daughter lives in Irby. She was on the first floor and all of her belongings were perfect like the day she left. Hope the rest of you have this experience

2:11 PM  
Blogger Ray said...

Patty, freshmen should be less concerned in my opinion. They have many more options and more time to make classes up. You also bring up English 101 which has 20 sections. I'm not getting that argument. You could have only one section at 8am like me.

2:33 PM  
Blogger tulane alumni said...


That's a good point and one that should be explored further.

As far as the English classes go, I know I had a few seniors in my freshmen writing seminar class, so I'm sure there are ways around that one. Definately, you don't have to be a freshmen to take freshman level courses. However, I agree that by not taking these courses as a freshman brings secondary problems. Many courses require students to have taken pre-recs (aka freshmen level courses). It will be interesting to find out if the registrars office will allow students to bypass this for the time being.

I would encourage you, and it's only advice, to stick around for the extra semester, if only for the sake of saving a headache later on in your college career. I stayed for summer classes after my freshman year and it really made things easier later on down the road. It made my class schedule much lighter. For example I took 12 hours each of my last two semester, compared with my roomates who were taking 18-21 hours each semester. Still, you guys will be playing catch-up instead of getting ahead of the game. Even more reason to attend the extra semester in my opinion.

But, to each his/her own. It's a decision that everyone needs to make for themselves. There is very little about what happened/is happening that does suck. At the same time, I almost envy current students. You're going to engage in projects and discussions that have never been attempted before. It really makes me re-evaluate where I am in my career and what I want to do with the next few years of my life.

Who knows, you guys may see me back in NOLA soon enough.

2:59 PM  
Blogger tuvadad said...

Mold is not just an issue of flooding, nor just an issue of Katrina. There are second floor rooms in Willow that got soaked every time it rained, and some form of mold is a way of life in NOLA. Even a third floor room in Irby isn't safe from mold, so what is?

Assuming that the moldy rooms were the exceptional occurance, and given the assurance of Dr. Cherey at the Town Hall meeting that they (Tulane) and their contractors were on top of things, I am surprised at the numerous accounts of mishandled belongings, and uninformed owners. On the one hand, not as major a deal as the many problems that are faced by the institution. On the other, don't set expectations that you cannot meet. Again, it comes back to trust.

Back to courses, it is only clear that the offerings are apt to change. As the University makes structural changes to entire departments in the coming months, expect even more. Just don't expect communication in advance.

5:30 AM  
Blogger clandis said...

Considering free checking omaha ? You'd do better by checking out Fee Free Bank .com . At least a $25 bonus for opening a new account, with bonuses as high as $1,500 ! You save more and get a higher interest rate to make YOUR money work for YOU.

8:18 AM  
Blogger averyTHEdog said...

so this is the banking blog now? retard.

11:33 PM  
Blogger Ray said...

It's a common thing everywhere. People go on popular blogs to advertise things. He doesn't even go to Tulane and possibly doesn't even know what it is.

7:51 AM  
Blogger waveroller said...

Isn't anyone going to discuss conditions they may have seen this past weekend? IT WAS NOT PRETTY!

9:04 AM  
Blogger BootNRally said...

Wow?! It wasnt pretty?!! Are you serious?! I am SO shocked.

NEWSFLASH. New Orleans just got hit by the worst natural disaster in the history of the United States. Considering all this, I think the campus looked DAMN good and Cowen gave a very good speech.

9:47 AM  
Blogger GreenWaveGirl said...

Being a freshman, I'd like to hear what all happened this weekend. Any takers?

11:11 AM  
Blogger waveroller said...

I'm not talking about the campus puss and boots I'm talking the surrounding area. From the airport to campus was totaled. I saw 1 garbage truck in 24 hours. Tried to eat at Cannons and got a SORRY no food left @ 630pm.Going back in Jan but that citys got 20 years of work ahead of it.Ive seen hurricaines before but that one was the mother of all. Campus was the best part.The rest of the city needs to pick up the pace alittle.Where is all the money going. There were still streetlights blinking on the ground. The campus will be an island unto itself for quite a while. Went to Magazine street because we heard it was somewhat spared. Yeah right! Plenty of work for all for many years to come. Those with any initiative will have plenty to do for years to come. Bring your work gloves.

1:20 PM  
Blogger Melody said...

not pretty? it looked pretty damn good considering THE WORST NATURAL DISASTER IN UNITED STATES HISTORY happened there and its only 2 months later. Things are coming along quite well actually in my opinon..

So yah trash needs to be picked up and houses need to be fixed but most of that wil be done by January. Tons of restaurants were open and tons of people were already back to New Orleans. So, a couple streetlights don't work? It'll get fixed. Everyone was obeying the stop signs perfectly well there. New Orleans doesn't have enough money right now obviously so it might not be immediately but it will get fixed by January. The air quality is better than before due to less people and cars being there. I'm also highly allergic to mold and had no problems at all when I was in New Orleans last weekend. Its not the doomsday scenario that the medias's 97% back to normal, and by January it'll be 99% back to normal. It's also a great opportunity to do some volunteer work and help out with the city. Complaning isnt gonna get you anywhere...why don't yall roll up your sleeves and help out someone else for once.

8:16 PM  
Blogger Roadkill said...

I am a Tulane dad. I visited Tulane last weekend to retrieve my son's belongings, which were moved to the Rielly Center from Monroe Hall. Initially, half of his belongings were lost, but I eventually found them in a mismarked box. It took a little longer than I expected. The Tulane people were organized and helpful, but the Belfor (sp?) people, well that was another story.

There were a lot of people in and around Tulane last weekend. A number of businesses (still less than half) were open, and there are signs of recovery everywhere. However, there is still much work to be done. The area around Tulane was worse than I expected. It was evident that there was flooding. Much debris (tree limbs, brush, appliances, furniture, etc.) can be seen stacked up outside many of the homes/apartments around Tulane.

The air might have a slightly different smell to it, but I quickly got used to it. That is not a problem. However, I detected a lot of dust in the air, which affected my allergies. I may have actually had a touch of the Katrina cough, but I don't want to comment on health risks, because I am not a healthcare expert.

There were a lot of trucks going up and down the streets, which I attributed to the reconstruction/recovery efforts. I believe that this will continue for a number of months. Hopefully, much of the debris will be gone by January (however, it was evident that some of it had been sitting in place for quite some time), but I am pretty sure that reconstruction efforts around Tulane (off campus) will continue for several months beyond that. Be prepared to live in a reconstruction zone.

St. Charles Avenue looked surprising good. While there were some homes that needed repairs (mostly roofing) and some trees that were naturally thinned out, it did not look like it had been through a Category 4 hurricane. Downtown and the French Quarter also looked well on the way to recovery.

Other areas were not so fortunate. Claiborne and Carrollton need a lot of work. Slidell looked really bad from I-10.

While most of my observations were made from a moving car (except in the Tulane area), I hope that gives some of you a little better picture of what to expect.

9:19 AM  
Blogger Yo man said...

Somewhere near the University of Washington a Houseful of College Students from New Orleans is Spending their FEMA Checks on Blown-Glass Bongs, Badminton Nets, and Beer. Got a Problem With That?

glad to see Tulane kids who don't need the federal money spend it on drugs instead of helping rebuild their community. I mean, there's no reason to get heavily involved in the student effort that I'm sure exists at U of Washington to raise money and collect goods for those hurt by the hurricane.

this would make an interesting entry.

9:55 PM  
Blogger TUStudent2 said...

Very, very disturbing article. What in the hell is wrong with these kids. Makes me sick.

10:07 PM  
Blogger tujunior said...

Is anyone having trouble registering for classes? I'm registering today at 1 but 3 of the 5 classes I was going to take are already full! This has never happened in the past with the major I have. Any ideas on why this is happening?

6:30 AM  
Blogger Ocatillo said...

Seattle Tulanians were messed up by the storm and did not exactly land on their feet. This was truly a disaster in more ways than one. There, but for the grace of God, goes my child.

9:08 AM  
Blogger patty said...

wow tujunior, that gives much hope to this lowly freshman

9:18 AM  
Blogger probablynevergonnapostagain said...

Put into context with the rest of the article the seattle tulanians are not nearly so bad as that quote suggests.

10:27 AM  
Blogger BootNRally said...

I registered at 8 this morning. No friday classes in the B-School for this guy! I only on the waiting list for one class and its only 2 people long so I wont have any trouble getting in.

10:56 AM  
Blogger Ben W said...

im not concerned, i checked the enrollment in all my planned classes and there is plenty of room, im not even worried about having to enroll in a different section from what i planned

11:15 AM  
Blogger RollWave23 said...

ive never had trouble getting into a class even when its full. just waitlist urself for the class, go to the class and talk to the professor in the spring....if he/she sees that ur definitely interested you'll get in the class

11:40 AM  
Blogger frustrateddad2 said...

it's official - it's on the website - new housing options...2 cruise ships, modular sounds better than renting in an apt that wasn't really cleaned up 'properly'.

My kids a freshman - but next year we'll be looking into this IF my kid returns.

1:31 PM  
Blogger pragmaticfreshman said...

I'm currently taking the equivalent of beginners' chinese 101 where I am now, and am looking to take beginner chinese 102 at Tulane. However, Tulane is not offering Chinese 102. They are offering Chinese 101, which I am already taking, and Intermediate Chinese, which is one level above what I need. So I am caught between a rock and a hard place. Furthermore, I have noticed that there is a lack of honors course as well.

2:30 PM  
Blogger decisiontime said...

I guess its true--there IS NO housing available for most people except for the very uncomfortable, ill-suited cruise ship option--designed for one week at sea for people who are related to each other happy share tiny, windowless quarters, not college students, 1/2 hour from campus facilities (library, etc). Tulane is opening prematurely, health wise, living quarters wise, organizationally, etc, and it will lead to their downfall......

6:49 AM  
Blogger RS said...

Gosh, Decisiontime, seems like a no brainer choice for you. More room for the rest of us.

By the way, seen the rooms in Sharp? I'll take the cuise ship!

7:43 AM  
Blogger waveroller said...

They are not opening too soon. They are doing what they must for survival.You can help the cause or get out of the way! No one is forcing this on us . It is our decision as to what to do. They did an amazing job of pulling this off considering the circumstances.No public works could have done this! Only private industry with great leadership could accomplish a task as monumental as this!

8:21 AM  
Blogger TulaneSnr said...

Actually if you think of all the offerings of a cruise ship its not all that bad. It will have its own dining service (i bet ALOT better than Bruff), fitness facility (no more 45 min waits for treadmills), swimming pool, and Im sure that they will have a library. Plus the shuttles will constantly be going, who in NOLA gets anywhere on time in the first place? Hey, its that or have 4 ppl in a double. Considering that FEMA (a Fedral Agency) doesnt have housing for many people, I think that Tulane did an amazing job providing housing for everyone with what is given them. If you don't like it, then don't come back.... no ones making you. This is the time in your life where you either help out and roll with the punches or complain and get nothing done... your choice. Im going back for sure!

10:40 AM  
Blogger said...

What is this blog giving you? To see the top two deck layouts of the Tulane Cruise ships, visit


9:28 PM  
Blogger CampyRecord10 said...

I was wondering how many people had things stolen or as Tulane puts it "missing" from thier rooms. I sure had, and it is just sad....I'd like to know who else incurred losses of this most vile nature.

11:26 AM  
Blogger pragmaticfreshman said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6:22 PM  
Blogger NewcmbJr said...

I had jewelry stolen out of a small jewelry box that was at the bottom of a suitcase full of clothes in my apartment in Aron. Next to the empty jewelry box was a dirty rag that I suppose was being used to clean the apartment, however it was quite obvious that the objects weren't in the category of those "lost in a separate box by HRL." It's incredibly unsettling that we've been told all of our things on campus would be protected from looting through the entire ordeal, come to find out, they're being stolen by the workers hired by Tulane. A perk of living on campus is that we are provided with safety, of which safety of our belongings is a part of, yet after all of the chaos from the storm, we're now learning our possessions are being stolen out of our rooms and we can't do a thing about it.

8:10 PM  
Blogger said...

I hope everything that was stolen is recovered. Things look pretty safe on the cruise ship!

11:30 PM  
Blogger patty said...

I got my bill today. It made no sense at all. It said that it was for the fall semester, and it charged room and board, and all of the activities fees. It also charged my scholorship. What it didn't have on it was tuition. it made no sense. IT also said it was due in 15 days. Does anyone know why?

12:23 PM  
Blogger Tulaneparent said...

I got the statement today too.. It was all to brief. It doesn't list tuition, nor list any of the financial aid we've received in the past, but they are charging a health center fee and a recreation center fee. I'd say this is about 30 percent higher than I've paid in the past 3 years my son was there.

You know a lot of parents complained about them charging tuition, but I didn't gripe. I am still being charged tuition and fees from the visiting university, and so far I'm not seeing any credit for any of that. Now, they are going to charge these mandatory fees in full?

Want to bet this is just the Fall semester fees, as they were charged to the account in late October. They'll show up again in the Spring. How can they charge an athletic center fee when the center was under water, and there were no students on campus?

This looks like Tulane is trying to reap in the bucks any way they can.

I've tried to be sympathetic and understanding to Tulane's plight, but this really makes them look bad. All these families have had additional expenses with relocations and replacing clothes, books etc., and to try to eek a few more thousand dollars out of them is just miserly.

I just don't see this as a way of encouraging students to return and support the school. It seems downright dishonest.

So,I hear they will make rooms in cruiselines available for students at a cost that is "comparable" for a room of that size/quality on campus. Has anyone seen just what they'll charge? Do you want to take bets on how much they will charge for a semester on one of those?

I'm beginning to think it is really not worth the effort to send my son back, and I don't think he'll be able to foot the additional costs himself. An education is important, but we can all be reasonable as well. This goes beyond reason.

12:42 PM  
Blogger student said...

Michael Hogg said that our statements won't be accurate until later in the year/beginning of next year because they have so much to straighten out. Be patient and if you have extra circumstances (like being part-time this semester and need a refund) then there's a web addy on the Tulane website where you can tell them what needs to be fixed on your statement.

1:13 PM  
Blogger Suzanne Anderson said...

I believe I had items stolen from my room as well. I didn't know this happened to other students too.

1:28 PM  
Blogger ncgwmom said...

Please don't start getting all upset again without complete information. The accounts receivable dept at Tulane has acknowledged that there are and will be errors. Instead of getting upset and posting catastrophic thinking here, whihch will upset other people instead of encouraging them to straighten things out, use the e-mail address they gave you and ask for help. I did, and I got a good response within 24 hours.

1:31 PM  
Blogger RIGIRL said...

I just got back from Tulane. Was able to pick up some stuff from my undamaged room and listen to Dr. Cowen give a very passionate talk to all of us there. I feel he and his staff have done a great job under very difficult circumstances. Tulane is coming along quite well. The problem, and I feared it, is New Orleans is not doing so well. There is something amiss. I realise this was a disaster beyond anything anyone has seen but there was no one working on any major cleanup which is so badly needed. Junk is everywhere. St Charles and the CBD are ok but wander a block away anywhere else and it looks like bombed out Iraq. The locals are waiting for the feds and the feds are waiting for the locals to make the first move. The problem is NO is dying. To not have a systematic cleanup underway leads me to believe the local Government has lost all control. They need to adopt Dr. Cowens' take charge - can do attitude or nobody will want to go back.

2:13 PM  
Blogger cfm said...

Rigirl 2:13 posting

I am a Tulane parent and was in NO on the 4th -6th of Nov. I also noticed the piles of trash, many that came and went while we were there. Trash pickup was happening on both Saturday and SUNDAY. I was shocked. It was wonderful! Remember the citizens of New Orleans have only been allowed into the city in the past month and those piles of trash mean that someone has come back and is cleaning out their house! Look at the piles as a postive thing. The clean up of your city is happening. I think spring semester will be the most wonderful experience for all of you! I am very proud of my child for going back to Tulane and of all of you! I can not wait to take him back down in January - New Orleans still is a wonderful city!!!

3:09 PM  
Blogger tulanefreshman said...

i am looking at classes to register tomorrow and alot of classes are filling up... how many people ahead of you on the waitlist is reasonable for me to think that i will get into the class??

9:30 PM  
Blogger Ben W said...

it depends on the size of the class, im number 5 for a cloass of 100 so chances are ill get in. Even if you dont get into the class if you go to the class the first week and talk to the prof and you will likely be allowed to enroll

7:10 AM  
Blogger tcsenior said...

don't worry about waitlists. just email the prof, and nine times out of ten they'll let you into the class. also, many upperclassmen like myself overregister because we're not sure yet what we want to take. i will drop 1-2 of the classes currently my schedule once i figure out exactly what i want my schedule to look like. i can only remember one time in my tulane career that i was denied a seat in a class, and that was because there was a huge waitlist of majors, and i was only taking it for a distribution requirement. you have nothing to woory about.

10:14 AM  
Blogger patty said...

I am a freshman and am not used to signing up for classes. I have a few questions.
1. What do you do if chem 107 is open but the corasponding lab is closed?

2. If you had taken a fairly decent calc class in high school, and passed with a B/B+, would you take:

MWF 2:00PM- 2:50PM
R 12:30PM- 1:45PM

MWF 10:00AM-10:50AM
R 12:30PM- 1:45PM

MWF 11:00AM-11:50AM
T 12:30PM- 1:45PM

MWF 1:00PM- 1:50PM
R 8:00AM- 9:15AM

3. Is 16 or 17 hours reasonable?

4. Last semester there were descriptions of each english 101, this time their are not. Do any of you have sugestions as to which teacher to take:

Thank you to anyone who may be of help.

12:28 PM  
Blogger Ben W said...

1 sign up for the class they will create more labs

2 dont know i took calc this semester at a different school

3 16 or 17 isnt too bad, if it gets tough you can always drop one class

4 sorry cant help again, my english 101 prof isnt one of the ones you listed

1:31 PM  
Blogger tcsenior said...


Calc will suck no matter what. I have heard decent things about Grillet. 131 is a very fast-moving condensed class, but if you feel very comfortable with Calc I materials, you should be ok. 16-17 hours is a normal load for a good student. Many aggressive students find they can handle 18-20 and more. Depends on your discipline, and how many of the hours are lab courses. As for the English, I recommend Kuczynski. He's a good prof, very enthusiastic, and a former chair of the english department. He's a specialist in medieval literature, and cool guy in general. Get to know him.

1:47 PM  
Blogger ncgwmom said...

Talk to your advisor to get good info about registering for classes, not internet posters, Patty! For example, some people LOVE Calculus (my son, for instance). You can't get solid information tailored for you and what you need in an internet forum like this, but you can by talking to the people whose job it is to provide it. Make them happy; give them a call!

2:15 PM  
Blogger RollWave23 said...

look up the professor and class ratings really helps a lot for help with figuring out scheduling

2:30 PM  
Blogger jdyo said...

Seriously, is incredibly helpful. I don't think Lagniappe is on there, but hopefully it will soon.

2:38 PM  
Blogger GreenWaveGirl said...

I have to have chem this year and the lab is filled and it won't let me register for the class itself, it says the co-req is filled so i can't register.

3:42 PM  
Blogger tcsenior said...

just email one of the chem profs; i'm sure they're planning to add more lab sections. they probably weren't completely sure what the demand would be for the first vs second semester freshman intro sciences, so i'm sure they just need to be alerted to the situation. also, if koplitz is teaching the lecture, make sure you take it with him; he's one of the best science lecturers on campus.

4:23 PM  
Blogger patty said...

I have tried to talk to my advisor, but she never answered my emails. Rate my professor is good but i could hardly find any of the professors on their. I wouldn't bother anyone to ask if i didn't realy need the advice. thank you to those who did respond.

8:24 PM  
Blogger Ray said...

2. Stay away from Reidel. Austrian accent, stubborn and cocky. I would also stay away from consolidated unless you took Calculus in high school and feel comfortable with it already. Calc 2 is the hardest of the 3, and I'm glad I took it alone even though I felt Calc I was a waste because I had taken it in high school and only showed up for quizes and exams.

3. 16-17 hours is fine. This semester is the only one I'll ever have below this number. It also allows you to drop a class if you get in trouble and still remain full time.

9:00 PM  
Blogger patty said...

ok. i know tulane is ajusting with the billing statements, but i was just sent someone elses bill in my email. I think a little more time and patience would help tremendously.

9:37 PM  
Blogger ncgwmom said...

Patty, do you have an alternative e-mail for her? If not, e-mail the college and ask. I know they are having trouble keeping track of people because they called here looking for my son even though they had been told where he was twice. It really would be good for you to talk to her, and I know she'll want to talk to you. Give them another chance to put the two of you together, and I'm sure you'll get some good advice. You probably have an e-mail daddress that isn't the right one right now.

5:33 AM  
Blogger BootNRally said...

Yeah Patty don't listen to Tulane students who have already gone through what you are about to. That would be a terrible decision! Instead why don't you listen to some mom on a blog. Sounds good to me!

7:32 AM  
Blogger ncgwmom said...

For goodness' sake, bootnrally, why be so ugly about it? I'm not just a mom, even if that meant I shouldn't try to help her. I also happen to have spent a couple of decades teaching at two universities and advising students. So sorry to have offended your sensibilities by trying to give the young woman some ideas that might make the process a bit easier.

8:05 AM  
Blogger patty said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

9:29 AM  
Blogger bsmjunior said...

Patty, if you go to and scroll down, there are links to the English department's web site, where you can find the course descriptions for the ENGL 101 courses.

6:12 PM  
Blogger tulanefreshman said...

patty- enough, talk to your advisor, they're helpful.

anyways, we have a big problem. i was talking to some seniors from my high school and they told me that no one applied to tulane. they are also under the impression that everything including the school was devastated by the hurricane. they didn't understand that so much work has been done, and continues to be done everyday. they said that applications are up from this time last year but how many of those students are only applying because they think its easy to get into? how many students applying actually have interest in attending tulane?? we need to make sure that there is a class of '10 or else tulane will go down the drain.

8:05 PM  
Blogger Freshman Mom said...

I wouldn't worry too much about the Class of '10.
For one thing, Tulane is expecting a smaller class and that's fine. Y'all just have to know that Tulane may be an even smaller school than you expected for a few years. There's nothing wrong with that. There's actually a lot of good that comes with it, including being taught almost exclusively by full-time faculty.

Also, I've spoken with professional college search firms, private college placement and planning professionals, and several high school guidance counselors. None of them share the findings you refer to. ALL have told me that they have plenty of interest in Tulane still. They've been holding-off, waiting to see how/when it opens in January to make final decisions, but all counselors I've spoken to feel very positive and optimistic about Tulane's future.

Worry more about your class enrollment than the big-picture for the future. I think it's safe, based on the professionals (non-Tulanians) with whom I've spoken. Of course, only time will tell.

YOU, the current students, need to be the #1 advocate for Tulane right now! Instead of just listening to kids from your high school, go talk to your college advisors, share with them about Tulane's plans, etc.

8:18 PM  
Blogger Freshman Mom said...

Where are you?
What's going on?
Are you alright?
We haven't heard from you in a very long time and this is YOUR blog.

I know I sound like a "mom" but that's what I am. It seems so unusual for Brett to be absent from posting for such a long time.

8:20 PM  
Blogger patty said...

I don't realy know how to talk to my advisor. I e-mailed her once and a week latter again. She finally responded, but asked for all the info i had given her in the first e-mail and said she was having phone difficulties, and hasn't replied since. I already regestered, and did the best i could.

9:20 PM  
Blogger tcsenior said...


the advisors are very overwhelmed right now, since they are trying to contact everyone individually. because you are a freshman, your advisor doesn't know your name/information yet, so don't be offended when they ask for it. if you are having trouble getting ahold of your individual advisor, just call the newcomb college offices. they will help you. if your concern is still with chem lab availabilities, i would contact the chem department office. they are very helpful. you can get all that info here: (note the spelling: chemstry). i am sure there are many other freshmen having the same difficulties as you, and i know tulane is doing everything it can to help everyone.

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