Donna Shalala famously emphasized the importance of football to UW. Many of us are devoted to UW football with good reason. Our team has been successful. It is popular in the national media. The players and coaches are extremely talented and wonderful personalities. Nevertheless, the health hazards of five years of head bashing among elite student-athletes are becoming increasingly apparent. Indeed the index case for chronic traumatic encephalopathy was Mike Webster, UW’s all-American center in the early 1970s and a legend in the National Football League (NFL). There may be a time in the not too distant future when UW has to consider whether our football team should go the way of our boxing team. If we needed to drop football, could we and would we? Please consider the following: (more…)
Archive for the ‘Facilities’ Category
In the summer of 1996, I stood at the edge of what may well have been the largest and most expensive construction zone of the past half-century of human existence: Potsdamer Platz in Berlin. In the wake of the fall of the Wall in 1989, the entire war-damaged, Cold War-neglected city center was being razed and completely rebuilt from the ground up.
Never in my life have I witnessed such a vast beehive of cranes, cement trucks, earth moving equipment, and, of course, thousands of construction workers, all swarming over vast tracts of excavated urban real estate and dozens of steel building frames in various stages of completion. In one massive effort, 21st century architectural wonders were springing up everywhere to evict, once and for all, the lingering ghosts of 1945.
Yesterday, I walked once again (as I do almost daily) through another construction zone that never fails to remind me of Potsdamer Platz, albeit on a much smaller scale: the UW-Madison campus. And on that occasion the same questions occurred to me that always do: