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Unconventional U-District museum in planning stages

RSO rundown: Pre-health Affair, socialism event and stroll competition

This column keeps tabs on the activities of the UW’s Registered Student Organizations (RSOs). A casino-themed affair, a day of learning about the Marxist tradition and a stroll competition are just a few of the activities that students are involved in on campus.

First annual Pre-Health Affair

ASUW Student Health Consortium has organized the first Pre-Health Affair, an event to “bring the pre-health community together and encourage collaboration between the student groups,” said Josephine Garcia, director of the Student Health Consortium and the president of Alpha Epsilon Delta, one of the seven pre-health clubs collaborating for the event.

The theme of the night is Casino Royale, and accordingly there will be casino games and prizes for the highest chip holders at the end of the night.

The pre-health RSOs will also be accepting item donations that will benefit homeless youth, which will be donated to support Neighborcare Health’s 45th Street Clinic.

The Pre-Health Affair will take place on Nov. 5 in Kane Hall.

“The Case for Social Revolution”

The International Socialist Organization (ISO) is hosting a teach-in on Saturday, Nov. 20, in Savery Hall. ISO will be hosting three different talks and discussions that night: “Can the working class change society?”, “What do Socialists say about the state?” and “What kind of organization do we need?: The theory of the Revolutionary Party.”

ISO will be hosting two speakers from Chicago: Ahmed Shawki, author of Black Liberation and Socialism and editor of the International Socialist Review, and Paul D’Amato, author of The Meaning of Marxism, as well as speaker Leela Yellesetty, a recent UW alumnus and contributor to socialistworker.org.

ISO felt that this conference was relevant due to the job and housing crisis in the United States, wars in the Middle East and environmental disasters, said Ethan Boyles, a member of the ISO. The talks will present the case of an alternative set of politics with which to understand the world today.

In addition, Boyles believes that there is a misunderstanding of socialism and that this “Marxist perspective has a lot to offer.”

Fourth annual stroll competition

Nov. 6 marks the fourth annual stroll competition hosted by Sigma Lambda Gamma National Sorority Inc. and Sigma Lambda Beta International Fraternity Inc. Strolling is a type of choreographed dance that is done in a line. There will be seven teams competing in this year’s competition: six of them are UW Greeks and the other is a team from Southern California.

The first UW-hosted stroll competition was held in the fall of 2007, and every year since then the competition has grown. There were only 300 attendees at the first competition, but last year they had a record-breaking 500 people in attendance. This year they will cap ticket sales at 650 people.

The proceeds from the ticket sales will go to a scholarship for freshmen women.

“The main goal of the event is raise money for the scholarship,” said Anna Munoz, who is in charge of the committee planning the event and a member of the Sigma Lambda Gamma Sorority.

The competition will be held in Kane Hall and will start at 6 p.m.

Reach reporter Rebecca Lee at news@dailyuw.com.

This is not your typical museum.

Moving exhibitions, walking tours, sculptures, music, billboards, trading cards.

These are just a few of the many ideas in the works for on ongoing project called Museum Without Walls, being organized by the University District Arts and Heritage Committee.

Museum Without Walls (MWW) is an interdisciplinary project that draws together the history and cultural life of Seattle's U-District through a multiplicity of unique forms.

Peggy Weiss, project advisor of MWW, describes this new initiative as an "ongoing cultural program that allows for new opportunities for the arts, history and education."

The project's coordinators held their second meeting last week, which was attended by UW students, educators, business representatives, historians and sponsors, who discussed future plans for the project.

MWW has been in the works since the committee met last year.

Jim Diers, a liaison to Seattle communities for the University of Washington Office of Partnerships, facilitated the original workshop, where people envisioned what the musuem might look like.

"I was struck by the participants' passion for the rich history of the U-District and their interest in sharing it with the larger community," Diers said. "I'm excited to know that some of the ideas from the workshop are now being implemented."

With input from the community, MWW is in the initial steps of creating several exhibits around the University District.

"From now [through] the next 18 months are when things are unfolding," Weiss said.

Plans include an exhibit about the history of protest and activism of the 1960s and a sculpture display headed by John Young, director of the sculpture department at the UW. This exhibit will commemorate the centennial year of the 1909 Alaskan-Yukon-Pacific Exhibition.

MWW is also developing a billboard program depicting U-District history. Other ideas include commemorative trading cards of important people, events and places associated with the U-District; a musical anthem for the U-District community and a haiku contest in celebration of great literature.

However, the project is still in the beginning stages.

"We need people to be in touch with us," Weiss said. "Our Web site is a communication vehicle for community members to tell us what they think is important in the history of the U-District."

This includes UW students, with whom MWW is hoping to collaborate for future projects.

Since these events will take place on or adjacent to campus, "it important for students to understand the place that they are," Weiss said.

Future opportunities for students include volunteering, internships, writing grants and even participating in the exhibits themselves.

The project is an ongoing process and will continue to adapt even when the museum is up and running.

"But the next few months are critical to developing partnerships and to grow and take ideas from the public," Weiss said.

[Reach contributing writer Haley Herr at news@thedaily.washington.edu.]

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