Since the 1960s, Tech’s school o art has o-ered its students a studio space in RichardsonDorm, located near Cottingham Dorm.The abandoned dorm rooms now providea convenient place or painters, photographersand other artists to work.
Proessor o art Nicholas Bustamante said hehas been the aculty supervisor o the Richardsonstudios since 2008.
“Providing a space to work is incredibly im-portant or nurturing a creative development,”Bustamante said. “Louisiana Tech is one o ahandul o public universities in the nation thatoers undergraduate students this type o pri-vate studio.”
Richardson is occupied by 38 students andproessors who have been provided with theirown creative space.
MC Davis, one o the studio residents, saidhe monitors Richardson and takes a permanentresidence in the studio.Davis said a lot o work has been done to thedorms and they are slowly getting the buildingthe way they want it.Some o the renovations include turning a bathroom into a screen-printing lab.“This is how you screen print T-shirts and allthe posters or the art department,” Davis said.“We get students to screen print and make themall in here.”Each studio is unique to each o its inhabit-ants, said Davis.Many students have decorated the studios togive them a home-like appearance, because theyspend so much time there; they said their studiois like a home.Jamie Johnson, a graduate photography stu-dent, said in her studio she has a place to takeand develop her photos.“I took this picture over against that wall,”Johnson said, pointing to one photograph.
She said she spends a lot o time in her stu-dio developing her photos in other ways than onregular photo paper.
“This is on a Japanese rice paper,” Johnsonsaid about one photo. “It’s a process where you coat the chemical on the paper and let itdry in our dark room, then you expose it like you would a traditional black-and-white pho-tograph.”
Johnson, who said most o the art the stu-dents work on gets submitted into shows, saidshe is preparing or her own solo show this sum-mer.Peter Hay, a graduate student, said the dormsare convenient because he does not have totransport his work to and rom campus everyday.
“I couldn’t bring these back and orth romhome,” Hay said about the 6-by-6 oot canvases.“It would just be a nightmare.”Hay, who previously attended school in Okla-homa, said even though he had access to thepainting building there, it was not the same as hisown studio.“We couldn’t leave our stu out,” Hay said.“It improves the quality o work and it defnitelymakes the size o painting manageable.”Having a consistent workspace where an artistcan leave out his or her materials is ideal whenworking on some pieces like an installation piece,said Davis.
“An installation piece is not ramed or asculpture,” Davis said. “It’s a piece where youhave to physically go to its setting or gallery tosee it.”
Some students would say it would be incon-venient to transport a project like an installa-tion piece because it would have to be reseteach time.
“Only a handul o schools oer private stu-dios to their students,” Davis said. “We’re ex-tremely ortunate to have these.”
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Tech students were able to garner national at-tention once again or their award-winning, uel-efcient vehicles.Heath Tims, EcoCar aculty adviser, traveledwith 19 Tech students to Houston on April 5-7,to compete in the annual Shell Eco-MarathonAmerica’s event.“The Shell Eco-Marathon is an exciting eventthat challenges students rom around the countrywith building the most uel-efcient vehicle theycan,” Tims said.
This year the EcoCar team won frst placein the Diesel Urban Vehicle category, Timssaid.
Nathan Seal, a junior mechanical engineer-ing major, said he served as the leadership boardmember and was excited to be a part o such asuccessul group.
“We were able to construct our diesel ur-ban car to yield 315 miles per gallon efciency,which placed us frst in the competition,” Sealsaid.The EcoCar team was able to construct andbring our cars to the event in Houston, Sealsaid.“It was quite a task because it’s somethingwe’ve never done beore,” Seal said. “It was awhole lot o work but our team worked very welltogether, that being the ultimate reason we wereable to produce and compete with our cars.”
The competition was divided into dierentcategories pertaining to what propelled the cars,Seal said.“We participated in the diesel urban car, urbangasoline and prototype gasoline categories,” Sealsaid.Tims said he was satisfed with his team’s e-ort throughout the year leading up to the com-petition.“Every year we have great students who work on this project and this year was no exception,”Tims said. “It is exciting to see our students’ skillsgrow, allowing them to produce vehicles that notonly perorm well, but are also recognized ortheir eye-catching designs.”Walter Miltenberger, a junior mechanical engi-neering major, said he served as a team memberand did not regret getting involved.“I totally recommend this experience to any-one looking to learn about what goes on in a carand just getting to learn how to work on a team,”Miltenberger said.
He said he was impressed with the overallsetup in Houston and was ortunate he was ableto travel to see the team’s work be put on dis-play.
“Houston was amazing; there was so muchsupport or the team it was impossible to not besuper enthusiastic and excited about the race,”Miltenberger said. “CenterPoint Energy wasthere and provided us with a sponsor, so therewas a eeling that we had to succeed.”Tims said he has been involved with the Eco-Car event or six years.“When I frst heard about the Shell Eco-Mara-thon America’s I knew it was something we want-ed to get our students involved in,” Tims said.“It was a way that we could inspire them to takewhat they learn in the class room and use it in areal world project.”Collin Hosli, a ormer Tech student and teammember o the original EcoCar team, said he wasable to gain a career rom the competition.“I was able to get an internship with Shelland was able to fnd a group I wanted to work with,” Hosli said. “Now here I am working withthat group and enjoying my job as we speak.”Tims said he was impressed with his teammembers’ ability to fnd time to work on the proj-ect.“Our students do all o this outside o theirclasses,” Tims said. “They work nights, weekends, breaks and holidays to build cars that representLouisiana Tech well.”The team was happy with their perormancethis year but they are eager to participate next year, Seal said.
“Anyone with an interest in being a part o this awesome team may join,” Seal said. “Youdon’t have to have a specifc major, we justwant people that are serious about what theydo and will work as a collaborative eort toachieve a goal.”
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On a quiet spring morn-ing, Genaro Smith sat in hisofce working on a writingthat could become his big-gest accomplishment.Smith, an English instruc-tor, said he was recentlyawarded the ATLAS grant.“The ATLAS grant is anaward given by the state’sBoard o Regents SupportFund to Louisiana artistsand scholars,” Smith said.
The grant allows proes-sors and researchers to re-ceive unding while they areon leave or work to ocus ontheir crat.“The grant willpay hal o mysalary and Techwill pay the otherhal,” he said.
Smith said heapplied or thegrant in Novemberand he ound outthe results duringthe frst week o April.
He said hewas awarded thegrant last Fridayto complete his poetry col-lection and an additional book. “I will go on sabbati-cal this upcoming winterand spring quar-ters to work on thesecond book,” hesaid. “The collec-tion is completed;I just have to reviseit.”
Though Smithsaid he usuallywrites fction, hisinterest in poetry began about two years ago and hasled to a collectiono 34 poems abouthis grandather.
“My grandather, a majorcommander or the SouthVietnamese Army with sev-en wives and 27 children,was stripped o his wealthand sent to a re-educationcamp when the communiststook over,” he said. “It’s likea biography o his child-hood all the way through tohis marriages and his timein a prison camp.”
Smith said the other book is a novel titled “The BeautiulOnes Are Not Yet Born.”“The other book is a collec-tion o short stories rom thepoint o view o Vietnamesecharacters,” he said.Although Smith said he hashad several short stories pub-lished, he said his decision towrite a poetry collection cameater a riend read a ew o hispoems.
“I wanted to write a novelfrst,” he said “Then DarrelBorque, who was the Loui-siana Poet Laureate, reada couple and told me that Ineeded to complete them.”Smith said Borque is thereason he completed thecollection, while Ken Rob-inson, director o the schoolo perorming arts, is thereason he applied or thegrant.
Smith also said the processor the grant was extensive.
“I had to submit a lettero intent, fll out paper work,write a two-page artist state-ment detailing what I haveaccomplished and what I in-tend to do,” Smith said.
Smith said in addition tothat he had to provide a let-ter o recommendation romLouisiana Tech President DanReneau.
“All together I had to sub-mit about 12 pages o work and a 20-page document o creative work,” Smith said.
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April 25, 2013 •
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