Breast-FeedingCongratulations on your fine feature about...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

April 21, 1993

Breast-Feeding

Congratulations on your fine feature about breast-feeding and the role of the lactation consultant ("Back to Basics," April 6).

I am pleased to share with you that St. Joseph Hospital has had an 8-hour, accredited lactation education program for nurses and physicians in place for a number of years, enabling these practitioners to be effective patient and family educators.

In addition, St. Joseph Hospital was first in the state to develop a structured support program for employees who breast-feed.

Please count us among those institutions mentioned in your article as supportive of lactation education.

Donna R. Swope

Towson

The writer is a clinical nurse specialist at St. Joseph Hospital.

Culinary College

The article headlined, "State funding of private colleges draws fire," April 2, is misleading in several aspects.

First, in referring to the Baltimore International Culinary College as a "Baltimore cooking school," Professor Richard Graham displays his lack of understanding of higher education in Maryland.

BICC, a private, non-profit, two-year college, offers associate degrees in restaurant management, inn-keeping, professional baking and pastry, and professional cooking.

A full 30 percent of the required courses are in liberal arts. The impression that the state of Maryland funds a cooking school is a gross distortion.

Second, the value of the aid to private colleges is not discussed in the article.

BICC, which offers four academic semesters in a calendar year and enrolls an annual equivalent of 1,000 full-time students, of which 700 are from Maryland, received $225,000 to help students attend the college.

If a public two-year institution attempted to offer the same programs to the same number of students, the state would have to fund at least $2,000 per Maryland student, costing the state approximately $1.4 million.

Is it worthwhile for Maryland to have students enrolled in the professional hospitality programs at BICC? Our 95 percent placement rate attests to the benefits.

The majority of our graduates work in Maryland, contributing tax dollars as productive citizens.

The annual increase of our enrollment by 25 percent for the last three years further supports the perceived need for this specialized collegiate education by both the public and the growing food service/lodging industry in Maryland.

The real question about higher education in Maryland is, "Do we need to offer a chemistry major at 19 different four-year colleges in Maryland?"

R. Rodney Fields

Baltimore

The writer is vice president of academic and student services at Baltimore International Culinary College.

Arts Funds

Can there be any justification for using Maryland's limited arts funding to benefit another state?

The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra will give a world premiere at Carnegie Hall.

New Yorkers heard the new music, by George Perle, and New York critics would write about it. Later, the BSO would play Mr. Perle's music in Pennsylvania.

Marylanders will pick up the tab, or at least the lion's share, for the BSO's hours of rehearsal time and for the trips. Yet Maryland will not hear the new music -- not next week, not later this season, not next season.

Someone at the BSO decided Mr. Perle was worth doing, but only in other states.

Andrew Powell

Annapolis

Comcast Needs Competition

After reading another article regarding the cable industry in this area, I've become even more enraged at the gouging by Comcast Cablevision. The latest article about competition in Anne Arundel County cable systems shows the root of the whole problem.

When you have a monopoly, you have unethical pricing. According to the chart with your April 7 article, Comcast charges 6to 7per basic channel when the other companies in the area average 4per channel.

The two competing cable systems in Anne Arundel county even give subscribers HTS and Disney as part of their basic lineup.

In fact, according to your article, only 10 out of 250 cable systems in the Mid-Atlantic area offer HTS as a pay channel only. It's no coincidence that three of these are Comcast systems.

It is especially irritating how Stephen Burch of Comcast tries to twist this fact by saying that Comcast customers, surveyed, overwhelmingly support not having HTS on basic. Nobody asked me or anyone I know.

Added to the problem is the fact Henry Rogers that even if I were willing to shell out $12-$15 extra to add HTS, I would have to use an obsolete cable converter which would render my TV's remote control useless.

Since my wife won't let us move to another county and my homeowners' association won't let me put a dish in my yard, I can only wait for the technology that sends cable TV over existing phone lines to come here and give Comcast a little healthy competition.

Rob Mandleberg

Reisterstown

The PSC's Touch Tone Rate Decision

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