|APRIL/MAY 1997 - C0MPRESSION|
THE WESTCOTT FIRE
In April 1969, as the fires of Vietnam War protests heated up on campuses nationwide, FSU had to fight flames on a different front.
A fire swept through the historic Westcott Building, causing damage estimated at $220,000. While the exact cause remains a mystery, arson was not suspected.
The damage caused by the fire and the subsequent efforts to douse it forced the evacuation of the building until it could be renovated.
Seven years and $3.2 million later, the new and improved Westcott Building opened for business.
STREAKINGAN FSU FIRST
One of the more notorious fads of the 1970s began on the campus of Florida State.
Streaking, which swept the nation in the 1970s, was started in 1974 when about 200 FSU students decided to run naked across the campus one mild March evening.
Despite efforts of Leon County sheriff's deputies to disband the streakers - some were arrested - widespread publicity drew hordes of onlookers and participants.
While some turn-ed the pranks into a family event, bringing their children, others were offended and responded with harrassment and even assaults.
When oceanographers want to study Florida marine life in a pollution-free environment, FSU's Marine Laboratory is one of the few places that can accommodate them.
Located 45 miles south of Tallahassee on Apalachicola Bay, the lab is the only state-run lab of its kind in Florida. Facilities include a fleet of research vessels, a complete dive locker, classrooms, saltwater-equipped labs and guest houses.
The almost-60-acre Seminole Reservation was originally a 200 - foot strip of lakefront on Lake Bradford. The property was purchased in 1916-1917 as a site for a recreation camp. To help offset the cost, the university rented dormitories to teachers for a Florida Education Association meeting during the Christmas holidays.
The first building on the property was largely paid for by the students who held benefits, sold candy, worked in tearooms and painted barn roofs. The camp was dubbed Camp Flastocowo, an acronym from the first letters of the school, Florida State College for Women.
STUDIES ON THE BAY
Hoping to provide a more personal experience for some of its students, Florida State opened the Panama City campus in 1982.
Today, with 801 students, the campus is a complement to the local community college. About 80 percent of the courses taught at the Panama City campus are taught by Tallahassee faculty who ride over together in buses.
The bayfront campus is a point of pride to former-president Bernard Sliger, who described the campus as, "a beautiful site with many possibilities in fields such as engineering and Navy testing."
The relationship between Florida State University and the University of Florida isn't always marked by tension and rivalry.
The Program in Medical Sciences is a classic example of how the two universities can and often do work together to meet common goals.
PIMS was started in the 1970s when a ground swell of would-be medical students became too much for the UF's College of Medicine to handle. The program allowed students to take their undergraduate work and their first year of medical school at FSU and then transfer to UF for their final three years.
HEROES IN ITALY
FSU students overseas in 1966 inadvertently became heroes and pioneers in the same year.
Soon after FSU opened its first Overseas Study Center in 1966 in Florence, Italy, the Arno River flooded, damaging many priceless works of art. Working shoulder to shoulder with the Italians, the students and faculty helped save hundreds of treasures and were recognized by the Italian government for their efforts.
Later, the Florida Board of Regents, pleased with the idea of having FSU students study under FSU faculty in a foreign country, authorized a similar study center in London. Both are administered by Florida State and are open to students throughout Florida.
Other FSU international programs operate in the Panama Canal, the former Yugoslavia; Leysin, Switzerland; Chianti, Italy; San Jose, Costa Rica; Taishan, China and Oxford, England.
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Copyright @ 1997 Florida State Times