On Campus

The Lance stops printing, Rick Ross & law school

What students are talking about today (April 8th)

No more Lance newspaper? (garryknight/Flickr)

1. For the second time this semester, the uneasy relationship between a student newspaper and its student union overlords is front-page news. The Windsor Star, the local daily newspaper in Windsor, Ont., reports that The Lance student paper at the University of Windsor has been ordered to shut down their presses immediately. The outgoing board of directors of the University of Windsor Students’ Alliance voted last week—with no warning—to force The Lance to go “only online” because the paper was $24,000 in the red in February. The last printed issue had a cover story called “Electile dysfunction: Multiple allegations of corruption plague UWSA election,” which asked questions about possible corruption and incompetence in a recent UWSA election. Shutting down the print edition prompts questions about freedom of the press and whether the board has been vindictive. Kim Orr, the outgoing UWSA president, points out that the critical coverage was directed mostly at executive members and the chief returning officer, not the board of directors. Still, the timing is suspect. The Lance will be expected to operate on a third of its current $180,000 budget, which would leave it a shadow of its former itself. (Trust me, just because your publication is online doesn’t make it free.) The story is reminiscent of when Western’s student government decided to take away The Gazette‘s offices in January. A backlash caused them to retreat. Let’s hope this follows the same path.

2. American colleges are talking about a crisis in law schools. In 2011, nearly half of U.S. law graduates failed to find work in law, applications to law schools fell 38 percent since 2010 and, despite the poor prospects, graduates now finish with an average debt load of $98,500. Well, it looks like market economics are starting to have an impact in the other direction. The University of Arizona’s law school is cutting tuition up to 11 per cent. In Canada, most new lawyers can still find work, though articling positions are becoming harder to come by and tuition has risen a fair bit.

3. The controversial Rick Ross concert in Ottawa is cancelled, reports the Ottawa Citizen. The Student Federation of the University of Ottawa pulled out of the show last week because the rapper’s lyrics glorify date rape. Adding to the scandal, it turns out Obed Okyere, the former Carleton University Students’ Association (CUSA) president, was in charge of the company hired by CUSA for the annual concert, called Pandemonium. “Okyere initially denied involvement with the company [Urban Jamz Enterprise], but later acknowledged that he is a director and helped incorporate Urban Jamz,” reports The Charlatan. This sure doesn’t look good for CUSA, does it?

4. A student at Western University is upset that men were barred from the campus gym one evening for women-only workouts, apparently to make the women feel more comfortable. “The explanation that some women are not comfortable at the gym when men are present is sexist, hetero-normative and highly offensive,” writes Arzie Chant in a letter to The Gazette. “It assumes that all men at the gym are not only heterosexual, but also such licentious sex-addicts that we cannot be around women without leering and harassing them.” Chant is self-described as a former ‘equity commissioner and pride resources commissioner’ on Western’s University Students’ Council. A similar debate occurred at Memorial University last year when men took offense at women-only gym time.

5. Rutgers University has announced an independent review of the conduct of fired basketball coach Mike Rice and the way the university handled the situation after finding out that he was kicking and shoving players and berating them with gay slurs, reports The Associated Press. Some faculty at the New Jersey school have called for university president Robert Barchi to step down.