Editorial—The Shell Game

This week, our feature article is an interview of new AUSU Councillor Darcie Fleming.  Find out more about this second year AU undergraduate student and how she relates Faust and Vermont.  (Hint: It’s not the way that I would.)

Also this week, we have the full report of the latest Council meeting including the final vote on the proposed AUSU Fee increase.  Your AUSU fees will be going up by $0.75/credit, (generally $2.25/course) to keep AUSU able to advocate for AU student issues and keep providing AUSU services.

Except Student Lifeline, that is. It turns out they may be cancelling that service.  Not because they don’t want to offer it, but because there’s a strong possibility that those types of services will be provided by AU instead.

In other news, you may have heard that the U of A Board of Governors proposed a budget with significant cuts to most of their ongoing services, citing concerns with government funding, despite the government giving repeated assurances that there would be no cuts to funding and would be a small increase.

The government is in the process of following through with that, and the U of A Board of Governors has responded by essentially saying, “Thanks, we’re looking at this now as extra money that we can do what we want with,” no mention of rescinding the proposed cuts is being made, so the Board essentially managed to snag a big pot of money to use in whatever special projects they like.  Notionally, these projects will be to enhance the learning environments and create better opportunities for students.  Of course, they’re not the bread and butter of basic teaching and educating, that’s boring. No, these are special projects that can have champions and be noted on resumes for Board members seeking to impress friends at dinner parties or private enterprises when they go on to seek other employment.

And, so far, the government is letting them go ahead with this.

So, seeing this, Mount Royal University has just announced much the same thing.  Significant budget cuts expected from all departments to address a possible shortfall in funding, despite government indicating nothing of the kind.  And when the government comes through with the funding they said they would, no doubt this will also be converted to special projects, with the funding cuts to simply providing solid educational service and good teachers and tutors remaining in place.

Because, why get on a Board if you can’t fluff your resume right? Who wants to just provide service these days.

Enjoy the read!