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The Best of Our Knowledge # 796


The countdown is on...almost like for a rocket launch at Kennedy
Space Center in Florida. But this countdown is ticking down the
days remaining until one of New Orleans landmark institutions,
Loyola University, reopens its doors for classes. D day is Monday,
January 9, 2006. Pre-registration is underway at Loyola with nearly
75% of the undergraduates already enrolled for the Spring semester.
School administrators are encouraged by 92% of Loyola seniors
coming back to graduate. Students will be able to move back into
their residence halls as early as January 4. Earlier this month, all
Loyola faculty and staff reported back to work. And over 50
administrators met on the Loyola campus to make preparations for
the Spring semester in a post-Katrina era. They talked about
information technology recovery efforts, academic and student life
calendars, housing issues, financial implications, commencement
plans, and rebuilding. TBOOK just recently had this probing and
revealing discussion about the university and New Orleans with
Loyola President, Father Kevin Wildes.
Glenn Busby reports. (15:06)

**(Attention Program Directors. For parents or educators listening
who would like to find out more, go online to .

* As we noted in our first story today...most of the attention has remained
riveted on the devastation brought by hurricanes Katrina and Rita to the
Gulf Coast. But South Florida's colleges and universities don't want to be forgotten. They've spent much of the past six weeks clearing debris and repairing roofs clobbered by Hurricane Wilma which caused an estimated
33-million dollars in damages to higher ed in that state.

* The terrorist attacks of September 11 brought heightened attention to
crisis management, leading colleges to develop disaster plans and hire emergency preparedness coordinators. But all the recent hurricanes
have taught universities new lessons: to plan for the possibility of extended shutdowns and to look beyond their neighbors for assistance. Colleges are
now planning for worst-case scenarios: storms, floods, earthquakes,
and terrorist attacks.

* You may remember earlier this fall we broadcast a couple of shows highlighting the brain-drain problem. The Ministry of Higher Education
and Scientific Research in Iraq has found that most of the qualified
professionals with advanced degrees have left that country. So the Iraqi government has announced plans to recruit 5,000 teachers for the
country's colleges and universities from Iraqis living abroad to fill
vacancies and halt a decline in academic standards.

* And finally, Valley Forge Military College in the U.S., the last all-male
military college in the country, will open its doors to women next fall.
The president of the college said, women attending...is a natural step
in creating a more robust and diverse learning environment.
Dr. Karen Hitchcock reports. (1:50)

Now, to end our show during this holiday season, we found this
holiday music review for young and old alike. It comes to us from
John Cech, Director of the University of Florida's Center for
Children's Literature and Culture.
John Cech reviews. (2:32)