Volume 92, Issue 53

Tuesday, December 8, 1998



Armour: Bulletproof or plastic?

As president of the University Students' Council, Ian Armour provides a voice for Western's citizens while communicating with all levels of government.

Although the president of the USC and leader of the student defenders has not followed through on many of his campus promises, he has faced opposition from a fair share of super villains this year. The first and most diabolical came in the form of a vicious cut to Orientation Week.

Armour said restoring O-week was his proudest accomplishment. "I had to go to the wall in all aspects. Being able to take something that had been taken away and convince [administration] to change their minds – I don't think I'll be able to top that."

In addition, Armour said he has spent a lot of time lobbying the tuition front on behalf of students through meetings with Dianne Cunningham, Joe Fontana and whoever else would listen. He also worked on the implementation of the bus pass and the expansion of the lawsuit over the question of Travel Cuts ownership.

While Armour has had some success dealing with some unexpected opponents, he has not fared so well in dealing with his campaign promises.

He explained that while a lot of his promises did not come to fruition, it has always been his belief the position of president is about character and dealing with situations as they arise. When he was making his promises he did not have access to all the information he does now. "I wasn't surrounded by people telling me what's been done before. It's a different position once you're elected."

A foe Armour proved less rust-resistant to came in the form of his efforts to bring The Spoke and the Wave under the campus meal plan. Armour said it was something he could not go ahead with because it would have been at the expense of students. "It's not over but I don't think it's something I'll be able to have closure on. Getting it done, to me, was leaving with the contract signed."

Armour also failed to carry through on his intentions to hold a campus-wide vote to determine if students would be interested in running a candidate in the upcoming election. Armour explained they decided not to do this because of how expensive it would be to run such a referendum.

"[The idea] has fallen by the wayside. This is one of the promises I guess you could say fell apart."

Armour was also unable to create a consumer affairs commissioner because he was advised it would open the door to lawsuits. In addition, his plans for a safety audit will likely not be possible because of the expense of conducting one.

All in all, Armour said he is happy with the way things have gone so far and added the feedback he has received from council has reflected this. "The one thing I wanted to do and the reason I ran, was to leave this place better than I found it."

Future Battles

- A tuition freeze in deregulated programs
- Continuing work on the lawsuit to determine the proper ownership of Travel Cuts
- Marketing the USC by getting more in touch with students
- Continue efforts to reach an agreement with the Wave and The Spoke to allow students to use their meal card there

To Contact The News Department: gazette.news@julian.uwo.ca

Copyright The Gazette 1998