Editorial: Student centre project not what “student-run” looks like

I was asked to include the image below with the first letter on page 15. As you can see if you picked up the paper, it wouldn’t  fit very well on that page.

I do want to include it in this issue though since it captures a pivotal moment in our university’s history: the closure of Peter Robinson College.

Trent was, and to this day often remains, hell-bent at severing  all of its ties with downtown Peterborough.

Unfortunately, it forgot to pack up its spirit when it moved everything up Water.

For many years it was at least kept alive through its students. But if the TCSA’s general meeting convinced me of anything it was that some of us have also lost it in a move.

When I think of student-run initiatives at Trent, what comes to mind is the Seasoned Spoon, Sadleir House, Trent Radio, Arthur, Absynthe, or any of the fantastic projects that have been undertaken over the years.

But the archetype for me would be an initiative that was largely lead by alumni rather than current students—the Peter Robinson College 50th Reunion.

In anticipation of Trent’s 50th anniversary, several PR alumni got together and planned what would become the show-stealing event at the Alumni Reunion Weekend last August.

I was privileged enough to be a part of the planning and the execution of the celebration, despite being only 12 years old at the time of PR’s closure.

Let’s compare that to the student centre. After receiving a “no” vote it went back to referendum a year later with a drastically one-sided ballot.

The next year of it’s life it was plagued by scandal and misinformation. It seemed no one really had a clear idea as to what was going on with the project.

Then, rather suddenly, the TCSA got it all sorted out? Don’t worry about it, kids. This is adult business. That’s why we need a vaguely advertised, pseudo-members meeting to pass this resolution.

That’s why we still have no more answers than we had before?

This hardly feels student-run. It feels like students are being kept at a distance from the project.

It feels like something for the TCSA and Trent Administration. The latter is especially peculiar since, to me, the student centre was always a big “fuck you” to an administration that didn’t have any respect for student space. After all, they’re why we “need” this thing (see below).

I’ll be honest. I voted yes to the student centre. I wanted to see another great student-run initiative happen at Trent.

This wasn’t what I voted for.

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About Pat Reddick 85 Articles
Pat was co-editor of Volume 49, along with Matt Rappolt. He's primarily interested in arts coverage, often editorializing on arts issues. He graduated from Trent with a Bachelor's degree in English Lit. Pat hosts or co-hosts several programs at Trent Radio, such as Media Are Plural. You can follow him on Twitter, or watch him eat through his kitchen window. In his spare time Pat reads a lot (q.v. English major), plays video games, and writes fiction. He has a blog or something but I couldn't find out too much about that.