Residence Hall Elevator Traps Student

Makiko Kosaka, a Japanese exchange student, was trapped in a San Rafael elevator late at night on September 25 after the elevator door jammed. She was rescued at approximately 12:45 a.m.

The elevator was on the fourth floor in the San Rafael tower when the door jammed. A resident assistant from the residence hall aided firemen throughout the rescue.

“I can’t believe people still use these elevators,” she said.

Fire Fighters from Station 17 attempted to rescue Kosaka using wire, tools, a wooden wedge and a crowbar belonging to a student.

A serviceman from Republic Elevator showed up at 11:40 p.m. and climbed from the right elevator to the left elevator to free Kosaka.

“It’s not the elevator, it’s the door,” one fireman said. “The elevator did what it’s supposed to do.”

Gevirtz Provides Cyber Outreach

UCSB’s Gevirtz Graduate School of Education, located in Phelps Hall, is offering elementary school teachers at Santa Paula’s Grace and Glen City schools an opportunity to share resources over the Internet.

The project, called SchoolLink, will allow teachers to voice their academic problems, such as teaching students who speak little English to read, on a website that can be accessed by other teachers, administrators, and UCSB faculty and doctoral students. The teachers post video clips of students’ performance, observations and resources relevant to an academic problem with assistance from SchoolLink.

Teams of teachers and their principal then work in teams to address the problem and communicate with other teams through special “chat rooms.”

“This search is helped by information the UCSB faculty and doctoral students add to the SchoolLink site,” said project developer Michael Gerber, a professor at the Gevirtz School. “Because the information they can retrieve will be far more than one person can digest, teachers and principals will learn to operate as a team.”

SchoolLink is still being implemented and teachers are still learning how to use it. The Office of Bilingual Education and Minority Language Affairs in the U.S. Dept. of Education is funding SchoolLink with a $500,000 three-year grant.

Archaeologist Receives Local Help

Three Santa Barbara businessmen have formed a nonprofit corporation called Exploring Solutions Past: Maya Forest Alliance to fund UCSB Archaeologist Anabel Ford with her research at the El Pilar Maya site in Central America.

“We wanted to see what we could do to help further her efforts working with the Maya people at El Pilar,” Santa Barbara attorney and secretary of ESP Randall Fox said. “The idea is that there is a synergy from gathering people together who have a common interest.”

Ford studies the Mayan agricultural methods and daily lives to understand how the culture thrived for a long time. She also involves local residents in the El Pilar area and has forged alliances between Guatemala and Belize governments to help preserve the site for study.

“With just a small amount of investment, they really could do a lot of things,” Ford said. “The reality is that human resources are terrific, but the funding for the activities is very, very meager.”

Ford held a public potluck on September 29 to show some slides of her work and raise money for her continued research.

Compiled by Sarah Healy and Stephanie Tavares