Using adjuncts helps Towson U. serve students The Sun's...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

April 25, 2002

Using adjuncts helps Towson U. serve students

The Sun's recent editorial criticizing Towson University's use of adjunct professors was misleading ("Growing up at Towson U.," April 10).

First, one can only guess at the number of classes at research universities, private and public, taught by graduate students. This brand of part-timer is, more often than not, fresh out of undergraduate school and frequently has no experience.

If a real professor does teach undergraduates, especially freshmen, the classes are so large students in the back of the room need binoculars to find him or her.

Compare this with the average size of a Towson class -- 30 students.

Second, Towson is not alone in using adjunct professors; nearly every public institution like ours in the country does this. Like Towson, these institutions value small classes instructed by qualified, experienced individuals. Using adjuncts makes this possible.

Third, all of Towson's adjunct professors are trained in their disciplines, and many hold doctorates. And many are members of our professional staff, have advanced degrees and are as accessible to their students as full-time faculty.

Adjunct faculty bring rich work experience to the classroom and, in my experience, are deeply committed to their students. They are an asset to Towson University.

Margaret E. Faulkner

Towson

The writer is associate vice president for student academic services at Towson University.

State system denies Towson any stature

As a graduate of Towson University, I was appalled by the comments outgoing University System of Maryland Chancellor Donald N. Langenberg made to [Sun staff writer] Mike Bowler ("A legacy of steady leadership," April 17).

From its inception, the university system has always looked to those of us on the outside a lot less like a merger of two redundant systems than like a hostile takeover by one system to ensure its ongoing dominance of the other.

As he looked back over the accomplishments of his administration, Dr. Langenberg found it impossible to praise even one school not featuring "University of Maryland" in its official name. He and the regents apparently find it impossible to fund these schools as well.

Maybe my school should change its name to "University of Maryland at Towson" to get the respect it deserves.

Dr. Langenberg needs to be reminded that there are 11 jewels in the USM crown. I hope our incoming chancellor is already aware of this fact.

Peter White

Eldersburg

Asset trusts protect hard-earned savings

Jay Hancock's column "Cook Islands and other safe places to hide uneasy money" (April 14) unfairly depicts the use of the Cook Islands asset protection trust.

The Cook Islands (like the states of Alaska, Delaware, Nevada and Rhode Island and approximately 60 nations) have adopted asset protection legislation to counteract the abuses that have surfaced in our highly litigious society.

Years ago, a lawsuit was an exception rather than the rule. Unfortunately, this is no longer the case, and responsible people turn to asset protection trusts to preserve their hard-earned savings.

Mr. Hancock implies that asset protection trusts are inherently wrong and abusive. This simply is not the case; asset protection trusts are as good, or as bad, as the people who utilize them.

Maurice Offit

Owings Mills

Red-light cameras aren't working well

I read with interest the story about Charles Ricketts' red-light ticket and the steps he took because the car involved wasn't his vehicle ("Erroneous ticket drives motorist to distraction," April 18).

The April 23 paper has an article about others suffering the same fate ("Other drivers getting the red light runaround").

I'm sure there are a lot more people out there who have gone through this injustice. It seems like the cameras and the people reading their results aren't working that well.

My recommendation is: If you didn't do it, please don't pay the fine.

Elaine Walbeck

Pasadena

Color-coded alerts won't stop terrorism

Jill Jacobs was right about homeland security czar Tom Ridge's new terrorism alert code ("Terrorism alert code leaves us a little blue," Opinion

Commentary, April 4).

The country is on a yellow state of alert, meaning there is a "significant" risk of attack, and the government asks law enforcement to remain at an elevated state of alert.

But why wouldn't they be watching the country with caution regardless? Anyone not under a rock (or in a cave) these past seven months should know we are a target for the world of terrorism.

The colors might let us know how we stand in this battle on terrorism. But what is to keep another unexpected attack from happening, no matter what color we are on?

Scott Smith

Baldwin

Burying Israel's finds distorts the conflict

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