Heard on the Hill: Admissions office extends scholarship deadline for applicants affected by Sandy; Law prof writes for SCOTUSBlog; ExCEL winners announced

Your daily dose of news, notes and links from around Kansas University.

• KU’s Office of Admissions is giving a bit of a helping hand to any prospective KU applicants who’ve been affected by Superstorm Sandy this week.

The office tweeted out Tuesday that it will extend its deadline to apply for scholarships for any applicants out on the East Coast whose lives have been disrupted by the storm.

The office’s deadline to qualify for scholarships is Thursday, but those students affected by Sandy can take until next Thursday, Nov. 8.

KU spokesman Jack Martin said the office made the move after it heard from some concerned students and parents who’ve been touched by the storm.

Martin also noted that natural disasters have prompted KU to make allowances on other issues in the past, such as in 2007, when it allowed late tuition payments for students from some Kansas counties that had been hit by storms and flooding.

On its website, the admission office suggests any possible future Jayhawks with questions about the deadline send an email to adm@ku.edu.

• The website SCOTUSBlog, which vigorously covers the U.S. Supreme Court, gained some fame around the time of the court’s health care reform ruling this past summer. It’s apparently even where President Obama gets his Supreme Court news, according to the Washington Post.

And a KU law professor co-authored a post there earlier this month, in anticipation of a case on which the court will hear arguments next month.

Perhaps if you have more of a legal background than I, this won’t be the case for you, but I have to admit the piece went a bit over my head. But author Lumen Mulligan, the KU professor of law who co-wrote it, was kind enough to sum things up for me.

The post is a summary of a journal article he co-authored. He explained that the Supreme Court has the authority to write the Federal Rules of Procedure for criminal and civil cases, in addition to hearing cases and handing down rulings as we typically imagine and read about. But sometimes the court also hears cases having to do with those rules that it approved in the first place. Mulligan’s article argues that the court shouldn’t hear those cases, but instead leave them for its Rules Committee, a group of lawyers, judges and professors that writes those procedural rules before the Supreme Court approves them.

Now, I hope you’ve got all that down, because this will be on the next exam.

• Last week I gave some HotH recognition to the finalists for the university’s Ex.C.E.L. Award, which is given each year at homecoming time to one male and one female student for various types of achievement.

So rather than keep you hanging, I’ll fill you in on the winners, who were announced at halftime of the football game Saturday. They were Kathryn Hoven of Chester, N.J., and Brandon Rogers of Plano, Texas.

Hoven, a senior, is double-majoring in English and history, with a minor in classical antiquities thrown in. She also is president of the Panhellenic Association, is part of the Honors Program and is a University Scholar.

Rogers, meanwhile, is a senior human biology major. He co-leads the recruitment efforts for The Big Event (that’s the annual springtime day of service when folks from KU go out into Lawrence to lend a hand), and he coordinates fundraising efforts for the Rock Chalk Revue.

So, yes, that’s some achievement there. Each of those ExCEL-lent students receives a $500 award.

• We at Heard on the Hill can’t claim this is where the president gets his Supreme Court news, but, hey, maybe it’s where he gets his KU news. Can you prove that’s not true? You can try, but only if you also send a tip to merickson@ljworld.com.