Photo: Devin Jones

You’ve changed, Ryerson

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By Nicole Schmidt

There’s something significant to be said about anniversaries. Milestones are important; they serve as a reminder of where we started and how we’ve changed.

For The Eyeopener, this year is especially meaningful. Fifty years ago, a lowly RTA-journalism student by the name of Tom Thorne had an idea to start a new student newspaper—one that would be independent from school administration.

Students’ Administrative Council president Barry Hales, who Thorne described as a “secret shit disturber,” helped move the plan forward and soon after, on Sept. 26, 1967, The Eye was born (although, not quietly). It was radical and borderline controversial. Thorne questioned everything. He wanted people to listen, and more importantly, he wanted them to give a fuck.

Ryerson has changed immensely since our newspaper made its first appearance on stands, and even more since it was founded back in 1948. At its inception the school was deemed an “experiment in post-secondary education,” and before that it was used as a training ground for air force pilots.* Somewhere along the line—more specifically, in 1993— Ryerson became a university. Since then, it’s managed to define its place within a city that’s constantly evolving. But not without its fair share of controversies and screwups.

Things are different: we have a new university president, new buildings and new scandals. Ryerson no longer draws attention from the Humane Society for using a live ram as its mascot and the business program has since upgraded from computer processors the size of microwaves.

There’s been change at The Eyeopener, too. We no longer work out of a tiny office in Jorgenson Hall and our masthead list continues to grow.

What hasn’t changed, and what hopefully never will, is that we still want you to give a fuck.

Regardless of whether you’re a new student or a returning one, this year matters. You’ve gotten this far, after all. But perhaps more important than reaching any milestone is the ability to keep moving forward towards the next year and the next big accomplishment. You’re here to grow—much like the institution has, and our newspaper.

So, as you go forth into the next eight months of your life (which will likely be plagued by sleep deprivation and other unpleasantries) remember that change is good. Challenge yourself, ask questions and be a shit disturber. Maybe you’ll even end up on our cover as a result.

*A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that Ryerson was used as a training ground for air force pilots in 1948. Instead, Ryerson was used as a training ground for air force pilots between 1941 and 1944. The Eyeopener regrets this error. 

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