By Dominique Blain
Last Thursday, I witnessed the most impressive display of school spirit the Ryerson community has offered during my time here.
Nearly 100 screaming, cheering, yelping and heckling fans boarded busses headed to Kingston to see Game 2 of the men’s volleyball championship against Queen’s University.
They painted their faces and wore their blue and gold and remained loyal to their team to the very end. They wore tattoos and t-shirts that were given out by student services; they made an astounding amount of noise with free Ryerson-logoed clappers and bam sticks.
They made the Queen’s fans — whom the announcer constantly tried to wake up, unsuccessfully — seem like comatose, dull observers. All this during spring break, when most students weren’t even around. In the end, we didn’t get to see the win we sought, but the combined effort of the fans and Ryerson’s department of student services deserved the gold more than anyone else in that gym.
This new, enthusiastic Ryerson can be attributed to our new, enthusiastic administration. Truth be told, though, the only real change was at the top, with the arrival of president Sheldon Levy. Since Levy’s inauguration, all levels of administration have been more cooperative with the student press — and more open to criticism. The cold days of former president Claude Lajeunesse have thawed tightlipped administrators who, in the past, had to go as far as calling security to get rid of the more persistent journalists.
Now, reporters and students finally get to chat with the higher-uppers in social settings, such as volleyball games. We just don’t get the sense that the vice-presidents see us as children anymore — and they’ve even stopped publicly referring to us as “kids.” This is not just significant for the Eyeopener and its audience.
The trickle down effect will see that, surely, students waiting in line to pay for tuition will get better service. This year’s administration, while still caught up in the legalities of its world, admits to its mistakes and learns from them. President Levy admitted to our news team that Ryerson could have done more for Arne Kislenko, and then he showed he learned from his mistakes by allowing his staff to promote the men’s volleyball team in an unprecedented manner.
The effort was successful and appreciated.