Editorial – Surprising Things I Think

This weeks’ “Did You Know?” article features some comments made in the Athabasca Advocate about AU moving to a call centre model. I was quite surprised when I read it, because, apparently, I view call centres as a positive step toward restructuring AU. At least, this is what the president of the Graduate Students’ Association, Amanda Nielsen, has claimed.

Personally, I find this very odd, as I’ve never spoken to Amanda about this issue, nor answered any sort of graduate student survey on this issue, nor for that matter, even seen such a thing. The only time I’ve been asked about this issue, actually, is with AUSU’s survey (not even one from AU), and in that, I believe I was pretty emphatic about how the call centre’s were not a good step toward restructuring AU. Further, from what I recall of the results of that survey, the bulk of respondents, even among those who’d taken courses in the School of Business that use the call centre model, were not terribly thrilled with the idea.

If you look at AUSU’s results on this survey (pdf link), you see that only 6% of the students actually think this is a good way for the University to save money. That number increases to about 46% if AU uses the savings to reduce course fees, but there are absolutely no indications (nor, if we’re being honest, reasonable expectations) that this will happen. So you can understand why I was quite surprised to find out from Amanda that this is what I think. Is this what you think as well? Perhaps I’m wrong and we all secretly think this, we just don’t know it. Feel free to let me know at voice@voicemagazine.org.

What is not so surprising, however, is that I think we have another strong issue of The Voice Magazine here for your entertainment and education. Our Feature Article this week comes from Katie D’Souza, a health studies graduate of AU, and who gives us some timely advice on ways we might work to keep our weight-loss resolution that go beyond simply a better diet and more exercise. In The Writer’s Toolbox, Christina M. Frey helps us write correctly from here forward, but not forwards. As well, S.D. Livingston looks at a pill that could make it easier for us to learn, but points out it may not be the panacea it seems. Gregor’s Bed is interesting not just for the review, this week, but also has a small lesson in musicology this week.

If you’re looking for a real time-waster, I encourage you to read the Mindful Bard and, in particular, follow the link for the Vancouver Film School’s youtube channel. But don’t if you’ve got a deadline looming?you’ve been warned. Not to mention the other content, including articles from Barbara Lehtiniemi, Hazel Anaka, and advice from Barb Godin to keep you inspired, entertained, and hopeful.

And when it comes to how thoughts can surprise us, we close out this week with Chazz Bravado. You’ll get it when you read the comic.