Engineer rivalry may have led to vandalism

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By Julie Alnwick, Irene Papkonstantinou, and Owen Ferguson

An engineering rivalry between Ryerson and U of T students may have gone too far this year — costing $4,400 in damage to Rye property.

“Every year, there is a traditional walk through the quad (by U of T engineering students) that has always been in good humor,” said Frank Cappadocia, executive assistant at RyeSAC. “But in terms of damage, we’ve never had this much.”

On Sept. 7, between 2 a.m. and 4 a.m., Ryerson security saw a group of people attempt to remove the silver Ryerson Polytechnic University sign from Jorgenson Hall at Gerrard St.

The suspects — allegedly participating in U of T’s annual scavenger hunt — were frightened off by Ryerson security and left the damaged sign behind.

Two smaller signs were also vandalized and other campus signs are still missing.

“At Ryerson every dollar counts,” said Cappadocia, and added that’s money which could have been spent elsewhere.

Cappadocia is worried Ryerson students may retaliate and risk their academic future.

“Ryerson students were not impressed. I had kids coming up to me saying, ‘Did you see that? Next time, we’re going to water bomb them,’” he said.

Shoshanna Mensher, president of Ryerson’s Engineering Students Society, was not impressed with the high tension this year.

“Small pranks between the engineering societies are fun, but this has escalated to vandalism, and is affecting the entire school.”

But the president of U of T’s engineering society, denied these claims.

“Relations between the engineering societies are purely friendly,” said Sally Atalla. “We’re all chums.”

Atalla did say their society has been getting “a lot of flak” for their campus “walk-through.” She said the engineering society heads at both schools had tentatively decided they would stop visiting each other.

“We’re planning not to go through the campus next year,” said Atalla.

A sign from U of T was originally a target on the RESS scavenger hunt list.

But Marion Creery, director of student services and the school’s official for orientation week, had the sign removed from the docket.

“You just can’t borrow it and return it an hour later without expecting students to vandalize it,” said Creery.

In 1995, U of T students vandalized a Ryerson sign, and another was found on their property.

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