I received this on Feb. 5/2008.
Broadcast E-mail to All UBC Vancouver Students, Faculty and Staff from President Stephen J. Toope:
For the second time in a week, our Vancouver campus community has received a threatening message.In this second case, an unspecific threat has been made for Wednesday. The threat does not specify a time, a location within the UBC Point Grey campus or the method of doing harm.We must take such threats seriously, and we are working closely with senior RCMP personnel to address this new threat.What can we all do when faced with such a threat? We are taking the advice of the RCMP to treat the non-specific nature of the threat with a higher level of community vigilance but to otherwise continue our normal activities.However, because of the specific mention of the Biosciences building in the threatening message received last week, and the traumatic experience of the occupants who endured a full lockdown of the building at that time, classes will be cancelled tomorrow (Wednesday) in the Biosciences Building.
For details, see the RCMP news release at: www.rcmp-bcmedia.caAnd please continue to look at www.ubc.ca for the latest information.
Now is this a new level of pulling the ol' fire alarm in high school to get out of class? Attention seeking tactics?
Well the first threat (See http://www.canada.com/theprovince/news/story.html?id=1deef976-d7ef-4587-a64e-bddbdf30b904&k=18142) seems to be quite the serious issue.
Infact there have been a few threats towards UBC as of lately. Other than the two above, UBC has gotten a lot of criticism towards development plans to kill the Grassy Knoll (see http://www.nationalpost.com/news/canada/story.html?id=228738).
They have a manifesto all their own- they will (or the news report says they will) keep vandalizing UBC to make a statement. Apparently they have gone through more civil forms of negotiation with governance bodies and, from experience, governance structures give little attention to the student voice.
I'm not a fan of UBC's redevelopment plans but neither am I a fan of vandalism.
But with a gun to my head I'd side with the protesters. UBC's stuffy bureacratic model is pretentious and clinging to old-fashioned governance models. After attending UBC, for much too long, and giving them over $30k in credit, I have to admit that the school leaves a student feeling a little alienated. So little student community. So little student involvement. There is a handful of students that get into the UBC politics but they are a rather exclusive group.
UBC also likes to pretend its an exclusive Ivy League school. i.e., they charge an incredible amount for tuition (compared to other Canadian universities), they have incredibly high admission standards that are solely reliant on a percentage on a transcript (which, in real life, means so little), and they provide so few funding assistance structures (coupled with the fact that they do not accept credit anymore when paying tuition as of 2007) because they are so elitist and expect students to be rich.
The fact of the matter is that UBC is sucking and students are starting to realize it. UBC is just lucky that it has a main draw with Chinese kids whose parents think UBC is the shit (likely because the new generation of Chinese in Vancouver are more often than not 1)Wanting their kids to go to exclusive snobby universities- i.e. Chinese people put a strong value on ranking and it works well with UBC's admission structures 2) Chinese families are becoming more affluent and can afford tuition- not to mention it is also highly valued for parents to make investments in their childrens education and therefore parents will usually pay tuition whereas White students usually have to do it on their own).
Is UBC a bad school? Certainly not.
But there are definitely better universities in Canada and even in the Westcoast region.
For the $30k that I've plugged in to UBC I'd say that 70% of that was completely well worth it (10% was my fault for not picking the right classes for me, 10% UBC's fault for providing sucky classes, and the last 10% is just because tuition was plain expensive (i.e. extra photocopying costs on top of tuition? textbooks costing a ridiculous amount even though they are mostly a Professors way of making a proper income (in lieu of what UBC doesn't pay him/her, and finally all those little AMS costs that seriously add up- I'm sorry, but I DID say no to several "funds" including the rape-fund. All those AMS fees are usually just a few dollars but they really add up and it doesn't make any sense to be paying to have services that should be public rights and public services anyway. Like, we're all taxpayers- why do I have to pay and extra couple of dollars so that I can have rights at *UBC* that I should have anyway as a Canadian citizen? I should be able to receive public services whether or not I get attacked on UBC property or not, or regardless of whether I am a UBC student or not. But of course all those little fees get approved because people don't want to say they do not want to pay a toonie extra for a diversity fund or a women's help-fund otherwise they will be labelled an asshole. But really, just because I don't contribute to the fund does not mean I don't care- it means that I think UBC should pay for it, not the poor students. UBC can fund it through its endowments (See "UBC joins billion dollar club http://www.canada.com/vancouversun/news/story.html?id=9a8b62cf-015b-48ce-8867-8f0ce6d732be&k=47247), returns in stocks (oh, that's where the money was lost http://ubyssey.bc.ca/2008/01/15/ubc-loses-18-million/), or how about the bloated salaries of government who makes decisions regardless of whether there is large student protest?
UBC is making enemies. It best do something about it. RECOMMEND this Post on Progressive Bloggers CLICK HERE!
Saturday, 9 February 2008
I received this on Feb. 5/2008.
TheVancouverManifesto by Samantha Orwell is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.5 Canada License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at http://thevancouvermanifesto.blogspot.com/2007/12/about-this-blog.html.