Volume 94, Issue 7


Editorial Board 2000-2001

O-Week learns by looking back

Editorial cartoon

O-Week learns by looking back

With another Orientation Week logged into the Western record books, it seems like change is definitely a good thing.

Prior to last week's events, pessimists could have confidently made predictions about how another O-Week would fall into its annual dreary demise. They could have raved forever about how pranks would undoubtedly overrun campus and how activities would go awry.

But this year's O-Week events are being praised as the smoothest and most successful in years, by both sides of the coin – and the reason lies in a different approach to the whole O-Week concept.

This year, administration is happy they don't have to face the prospect of a lawsuit like they did last year, while the University Students' Council is glad they can boast about everything going like clockwork. Moreover, administration found out there was no need to be Big Brother when both sides could co-habitate as one happy family.

Instead of staying the same, this year's changes included a two-day move-in which allowed the traffic flow of first-year students to be spread out, instead of crammed-in. The blend of academic and entertainment focused activities gave the week some balance.

As well, several logistical tweaks, like making the week's events all-dry instead of wet-dry, further eliminated the chance of events turning sour. Learning from past mistakes and applying them to this year's activities was key to making it work – and work well it did.

So, now that it's all over, students have to realize that it isn't really all over until something long-term is struck with the administration that governs the bottom-line on all orientation activities.

Proponents of O-Week should make the most of this year's success and get something down in black and white – something that will guarantee similar success in the years ahead. A formal agreement with administration, detailing an all-dry week, with more control to sophs and a standard two day move-in period, will allow future frosh to follow this year's framework of how an O-Week should be executed.

And although it's in both the USC's and administration's self-interest to proclaim last week an indubitable success, what with the 2001 Canada Summer Games coming to town and the recent launch of fundraising mammoth Campaign Western, ostensible motives declaring victory still seem to hold water.

An intelligent approach to an O-Week that could have ended in utter disaster, is what totally turned the tide. All that is left to be done is to get some sort of long-term agreement in order. After all, if both sides praised the running of this year's O-Week so highly, there's no reason why they wouldn't want the same thing to happen next year.

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