By Rob Granatstein
As the fight between Ryerson’s student centre groups and the Women’s Centre over one small room becomes a battle royale, one thing is becoming painfully obvious — we need more space.
Ryerson administration will not take their grubby hands off anything they have right now. In fact, they’re doing the opposite. They moved the Computer Shop into half the space that used to house Ryerson’s student pub, but didn’t relinquish its old office across the hall.
So what to do?
Hey, what a perfect tie to reopen Ryerson’s longest running debate — new student centre…yes or no?
Today marks the first meeting regarding the student centre since Napoleon-wannabe, and the past RyeSAC prez Paul Cheevers quashed any hope for a new student home two years ago.
It was, and still is, the wet dream of both Ryerson big-wigs and RyeSAC loonies.
Angelo DeLuca and his executive cronies figure there’s not time like the present with the success of Ram in the Rye.
So, should there be a new student centre?
Well, let’s think… Do we have a cool place for students to go on campus? Yes, Oakham House. Could it be better? Oh yeah.
Is there a spot for all student needs, including student services, computer labs, study areas, CKLN, student groups, the Women’s Centre and — especially — The Eyeopener? No. Should there be? You bet your life, especially in light of this current space jam.
Is there a spot to put a student centre? Yes, sorta. Between Oakham House and O’Keefe House is a perfect spot. Just flatten the old journalism building and bingo, great spot. If a couple of RyeSACers had their way, O’Keefe House would see the wrecking ball too, paving the way for the Uber Student Centre. Five floors or more, big, shiny, tons of concrete. Mmmm.
And the downside. Check your chequebook. This would cost megabucks, probably upwards of $50 per student per year. No one in this school (except for those of you making school a lifelong goal) would ever see the centre built. It would be three years, best case, before the thought of construction would enter anyone’s mind.
Ryerson does need a real student centre. It also needs a whole whack of money to make it happen. Since it’s impossible to find any money around this place, never mind multiple millions, we recommend no one stressed too much over the details.
It’s a dream and will almost certainly remain a dream.
And it’s too bad.