The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas on May 18, 1995 · Page 21
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The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas · Page 21

Salina, Kansas
Issue Date:
Thursday, May 18, 1995
Page 21
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ROBERT ENTRIKEN JR. Neighbors Editor Send us your newsl We want items about accomplishments at school, at work and in the community; items about organizations; and items about family events. We also want readers' thank- you notes. Items need to be submitted in writing, preferably typed, and include a name, address and telephone number. Tributes and thank-you notes will be printed with the author's name and address (plus age, for children). The name of a group or organization alone is not an acceptable signature. Most photographs are acceptable, including color prints, slides and Polaroid and 35mm negatives. We will return material if a stamped, self-addressed envelope is provided. DEADLINE: Material must arrive by Friday to be considered for the following Thursday's edition. There is no charge. Items arriving too late, or for which space is not available, will be held for a later edition. Items may be brought to the Journal office at 333 S. Fourth or be mailed to Neighbors, The Salina Journal, P.O. Box 740, Salina, Kan. 67402 NOTE: Neighbors does not publish announcements of upcoming events. Submit those items for use in the daily Salina Journal. Neighbors distribution INDEX At school Page 5 At work Page 2 Organizations Page 12 Reunions Page 16 Spotlight Page 2 Thank yous Page 14 Just one of the guys But he's twice the age of the average dorm dweller By LILLIAN ZIER Th» Solina Journal L onnie Burk is just one of the guys — sort of. In a dormitory full of mostly 18- through 22-year-olds, his curly hair is peppered with gray and he has a few lines at the corners of his blue eyes. • Burk is believed to be the oldest student to live at the Kansas State University-Salina residence hall this past academic year. At 42, he has a little bit of experience his peers don't have. Sometimes, they come to him for advice. But he wants to make one thing clear: "I've gone to them for advice, too," he said recently, while seated in the lobby of the dorm with half a dozen other students watching auto racing on TV. "A lot of them are right out of high school," Burk said. "High school for me was ages ago. What they have is more up-to-date than what I've got." Burk started at the technology college in the fall. A Manhattan native, Burk tried college in his home town when he graduated from high school, but it didn't work out, so he entered the Air Force. In 1978, he went to work for the Burroughs Corp. as a computer specialist, but was laid off when the company closed its plant in Goleta, Calif. He then went to work for Martin Marietta, working in the space shuttle program. That job ended with a layoff in 1986. A couple more jobs later, he came back to Kanaat in 199?. During' his years in California, Burk attended college and received an associate's degree in liberal arts. After returning to Kansas, he considered going to Kansas State in Manhattan, but decided he wanted the more hands-on education provided at the technology college in Salina. "When I decided to start going here, the next thing was, where am I going to live?" he said. College officials told him there was a new dorm, and when he compared costs with an apartment, he found the dorm would be more economical. The cost is $400 to $500 a month, which includes meals, he said. Apartment living also would mean a drive to campus, extra costs for Lourie Zipf/Salina Journal Lonnie Burfc, 42, is believed to be the eldest student living in^he residence hall at Kansas State University-Salina this past academic year. laundry, utility bills, and buying and cooking food, Burk said. At the dorm, the telephone and cable TV in the rooms are the only utility costs. But Burk prefers watching TV in the lobby. "It's a little more family-like," he said. Being older than most of the dorm dwellers doesn't faze him. "It hasn't really been on my mind," he said. I just consider myself another one of the guys — just another student." But there are occasions — such as the time the young guys wanted him to play mud football during finals week. And there was the time someone set off a bottle rocket under his door at 1:30 a.m. In September, Burk was elected residence hall governing board president. As president, he helped get a social committee started, and the committee organized a barbecue. The group also has tried to get activities started such as going to a Wichita Thunder hockey game. Otherwise, Burk said he socializes little. His girlfriend, whom he met in Manhattan, moved to Port St. Lucie, Fla. He is spending the summer there. He and some other dorm residents sometimes went to movies or out to eat. On this windy spring day, his buddies gathered around the TV set in the dorm indeed treat him like one of their own. Asked what it's like having him around, Mike Reilly, 22, quips, "Torture." Ben Mace, 20, who will be Burk's roommate next year, said, "We regard him more less as just like the rest of us. "He goes out with us to movies ... he's interested in the same things we are," Mace said. He noted that Burk brought "a lot of experience onto campus. He shares his experience with us, and keeps us from doing dumb and stupid things. He keeps us out of trouble." Burk shares several classes with those gathered in the TV room — Mace, Reilly and Mark Stieger, 21. One thing Burk liked about the dorm is the study groups. He met with them and others for projects and tests, and they invited off-campus students to join them. He expects to live in the dorm until he graduates in 1998. "I recommend that first-year students try the residence hall experience," he said. "If they don't like it, then they can try an apartment then- second year."

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