Volume 95, Issue 18

Tuesday, October 2, 2001
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Engineers, UWO in boozefest battle

Students politicos clamour for BOG seats

Jackpot! $200 mil. raised

Brown: "Waterloo still sucks"

Expert: Microsoft's guilt unclear

University means money

Hate crimes and drunks keep coppers busy

News Briefs

Engineers, UWO in boozefest battle

By Joel Brown
Gazette Staff

Western's Undergraduate Engineering Society is outraged after they were forced to cancel a Homecoming party, resulting in the loss of thousands of dollars, following pressure from school administration.

According to UES president Nancy Wigmore, the society lost between $5,000-$6,000 after last Friday's cancellation of the first annual "Festivus," which was scheduled for Saturday.

The society said they felt threatened by Peter Mercer, VP-administration.

Mercer told them he was concerned with alcohol consumption that would take place at the event and that Western would take action under the Student Code of Conduct, which allows students to be punished for misdeeds outside school property, Wigmore said.

"Administration decided [that] it wasn't happening," Wigmore said. "If we went forward, they would enforce the Student Code [of Conduct]. Our academic careers are more important than this."

The Homecoming event, which was to be staged in Lucan, a town outside of London, was supposed to replace engineering Movie Night, an Orientation week event that had been postponed.

Wigmore said while Movie Night was geared towards first-year students, Festivus would have focused on alumni, while permitting undergraduates to attend.

Administration felt the changes were not enough since the event would still include alcohol, be held out-of-town and associated with the university, said Susan Grindrod, acting VP-administration while Mercer is on leave.

UES said they felt they were being specifically picked on by administration because Western seemingly did not pressure the cancellation of other similar Homecoming parties, set to be held both on and off-campus.

"Anybody who's been here for awhile can see there's been tension between the engineers, specifically the student council, and us," Grindrod said.

Lucan Community Memorial Centre facility manager Justin Fidler said he received both a phone call and letter from Mercer saying Western was not endorsing the event and did not approve.

Fidler said he felt the students had taken necessary precautions to stage the party, which included notification to OPP and the fire department, security and a building code permit for a tent.

–with files from Kristina Lundblad

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Copyright The Gazette 2001