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To the Editor: It takes a big person to stand up and admit they were wrong. In Jesse Spector's column, ("Schnur the right answer," The Daily Pennsylvanian, 2/28/01), he admits that not only once but twice. Thank you, Mr. Spector, for your column -- and for putting some faith in the Penn women's varsity swim team and coach Mike Schnur. The women swimmers will look for you in the stands next season, cheering them on to an even better record and an even higher finish at Ivies.

Cathy Holland College '01

The writer is captain of the women's varsity swimming team.

To the Editor: Once again, outgoing Vice President and Chief of Staff Steve Schutt is in the media touting his "successes" in West Philadelphia. But before he and his family permanently leave town for Lake Forest, Ill., perhaps we might take independent stock of his most current achievements. There's the theater that was never completed, and the stalled dental building, and the Freshgrocer -- the store that would not open. And then there's the jewel in his crown, the new "public" school at 43rd and Spruce. The undertow from this project has been considerable. One of the few safe green spaces in the area was decimated, an existing schol was forced to move and, as of last week, closed down. And dog-owing Penn students, faculty and staff have been displaced with no alternatives and the firm assurance of no assistance at all. Children, trees and dogs. Well done, indeed, Mr. Schutt. Enjoy Illinois.

Clarence Hammond Ph.D. student, History and Sociology of Science

To the Editor: I was glad to see Friday's editorial expressing support for the South Asia Regional Studies Department ("Saving a department," DP, 3/2/01). The editorial points out that the report will recommend either to "retain, restructure or eliminate" the SARS Department. I feel that this consideration is entirely unnecessary, and that the department's status should not even be questioned. The SARS Department was, for a long time, the best in the nation. Its recent troubles should not be considered as a valid reasons to demote or restructure the department. Demotion to a program status would only show a blatant disrespect for the classical and cultural aspects of South Asia studies, and a "restructuring" would signal that South Asia studies as an individual field is not a priority to Penn. A "restructuring," could include the combination of SARS with other departments. While this is speculative until we actually see the report, a department combination would signal not only a disrespect for the classical and cultural aspects, but it would also relegate South Asia studies to a less respected position in relation to its Western peers. I feel that South Asia studies should be kept as a well defined department with a balance of classical, cultural and modern course offerings. I trust that School of Arts and Sciences Dean Samuel Preston, when he makes his final decision, will recognize South Asia as a field of study and as a culture to be equally important at Penn -- and as a department not requiring demotion or "restructuring," but in need of a renewed commitment through faculty appointments and further expansion.

Shaun Gonzales College '03

The writer is a member of the Save SARS Coalition.

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