Holding knowledge in their palms

Lauren Guillory works on her Palm Pilot m130 with fiery grace. Using a slender 3-inch stick, her hand flicks staccato taps across the half-sandwich-sized computer as she etches a memo to a friend.

In a breath, she clicks on an icon, sends the message into cyberspace and feverishly scrolls down the screen to tackle the day’s next task.

Fall Fest promotes minority involvement

Rushing around a circle of tables, students filled their hands with packets and brochures while a crowd gathered to get a good spot to watch the step show. Others were busy enjoying free barbecue. The atmosphere was busy as students of many different backgrounds interacted with each other Wednesday evening, kicking off the year at MU Black Culture Center's annual Fall Fest.

Heartland Rally

There seemed to be few undecided voters among the 15,000 people who greeted President Bush with loud cheers Tuesday afternoon at the Boone County Fairgrounds.

Among signs reading “Leadership for the Heartland,” Bush delivered a speech highlighting domestic issues such as health care and the war on terrorism to an overwhelmingly supportive crowd. Pauses in the speech were filled by enthusiastic chants of “four more years.”

Rios pleads not guilty in Valencia murder case

Murder suspect Steven Rios pleaded not guilty Tuesday to charges of first-degree murder and armed criminal action in connection with the June 5 death of 23-year-old MU student Jesse Valencia.

Circuit Judge Gene Hamilton did not set a trial date for Rios, a former Columbia police officer. A representative from Hamilton’s office said trial dates are typically set within a few days of arraignment.

Domestic issues focus of speech

President Bush, in a Tuesday afternoon speech at the Boone County Fairgrounds, focused heavily on domestic issues such as health care, education and job creation while reiterating his convention stance that America needs strong, decisive leadership in the war on terrorism.

Though the policy matters of the speech deviated little from his convention address six days ago, Bush started his speech with a plea for help to the loyal crowd of 15,000 sign-waving mid-Missourians.

Bush supporters applaud their man

A crowd of about 15,000 overwhelmingly Republican mid-Missourians gave President George W. Bush an enthusiastic reception as he visited the Boone County Fairgrounds Tuesday. Attendees highlighted the war on terrorism and the economy as their foremost concerns but also emphasized moral integrity and social conservatism.

“Terrorism is a big issue for me,” said Philip Johnson, 62, a retiree of the telecommunications firm TelCo. “I think (Bush is) going after them where they live, and I don’t think this is something you can sit and wait on. I think this is something you have to be proactive about, and I think he’s done an excellent job with that.”

CEOs who outsource Missouri jobs back Bush

President Bush’s campaign is heavily supported by Missouri CEOs who have sent more than 15,000 of the state’s nonfarm jobs abroad since January 2001, according to a report by the Missouri Citizen Education Fund.

The report, released at a news conference at the Boone County Fairgrounds before Bush’s rally Tuesday, said CEOs outsourcing Missouri jobs support Bush over Democrat John Kerry 13-to-one.

Missourians’ personal progress is praised

SEDALIA — Teresa Kelley, 41, of Sedalia sat in a crowd of about 3,000 in the Missouri State Fairgrounds’ Coliseum to hear President Bush on Tuesday, just as she did 20 years ago when former President Ronald Reagan campaigned for re-election in the very same spot.

“They have a very similar style,” Kelley said. “They both spoke with honesty and optimism.”

Quilt aims to raise rape awareness

The Survivors’ Quilt is a Harlequin patchwork of 14-by-14-inch cloth squares made by MU students who have dealt with sexual assault or rape, whether as victims, friends or relatives of victims.

Its scores of squares show diverse colors, symbols and words — from camouflage to crosses and inspirational quotes — but they are united by the theme of recovery.

HIV house approved for funds by council

A group dedicated to helping HIV/AIDS patients in mid-Missouri is one step closer to increasing affordable housing for its clients after Tuesday’s city council meeting.

Following a public hearing, the council unanimously approved an amendment to its fiscal 2004 plan for administering federal housing grant money that will give $125,000 to the Regional AIDS Interfaith Network of Central Missouri, or RAIN.

MU to inform students on safety poles

For MU students walking around campus at night, blue can be the color of safety. Today, the Missouri Students Association and the MU Police Department will show students why.

A mock incident and demonstration of the emergency poles around campus — sometimes referred to as blue lights — will occur at 5 p.m. at the north end of Francis Quadrangle.

Curators to weigh reactor deal

MU is taking another step this week in securing the $8.1 million needed for the new Life Sciences Incubation Center on Research Reactor Field.

The center is part of a statewide effort to create economic development from the life sciences-related research done throughout the University of Missouri system.

Bush jeered about jobs, Iraq

Olin Fugit, a 61-year-old pipe fitter, has been in and out of work for the last four years.

“Because of outsourcing and little construction, about 90 members of the Plumbers and Pipe Fitters Local 562 are unemployed,” he said.

Blind computer users have trouble with Internet

Gail Bryant listens impatiently to her computer as it lists each of the links on the city of Columbia’s Web site.

Last Christmas, she did all her shopping online, even though she is blind and cannot see the screen.

Car-parts store draws hot discussion

A plan to put a car-parts store at the intersection of Providence Road and Third Avenue has drawn heat from neighbors.

Shop owner Tom Kardon wants to rezone the area for commercial use to allow for the store.

Storage goes underground

The real dilemma in the Boone County Courthouse isn’t in the courtroom. It’s in the clerk’s office.

The Missouri Judiciary, the governmental body that oversees the state’s court system, has decided Circuit Court Clerk Cheryl Whitmarsh needs at least five more full-time employees to help her handle the court’s swelling docket.

Subterranean storage center touts space, security

Jeremy Fike was a bit jumpy after he started working in Subtera.

“Sometimes we hear dynamite explosions, and the first couple of times we heard those, it was a little freaky,” Fike said. “But we got use to them pretty fast.”

Green Meadows rezoning on hold

City officials will once again table a developer’s requests to rezone land along Green Meadows Road to accommodate a plan to build townhouses and villas on the property.

A news release from the office of City Manager Ray Beck confirmed that the Columbia City Council will not hold public hearings on the requests, though they were scheduled to be held tonight.

Agency looks to expand service

A proposal by Boys and Girls Town of Missouri to zone and annex land along Bearfield Road will be the subject of a public hearing before the Columbia City Council today.

Boys and Girls Town received a positive recommendation at the last meeting of the Columbia Planning and Zoning Commission to bring about 5.5 acres of land south of Nifong Boulevard into the city. The group hopes to use six multi-family residences on the property to house children in the program and to provide offices for Boys and Girls Town staff.

Rios pleads not guilty

Murder suspect Steven Rios pleaded not guilty to charges of first-degree murder and armed criminal action in connection with the June 5 death of 23-year-old MU student Jesse Valencia during his arraignment this morning.