Volume 95, Issue 10

Tuesday, September 18, 2001
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Bomb threat directed at Western

Terrorism: what should we tell the children?

UWO clubs pissed at "half"-assed deal

Old idea, same story for USC

Drugs, stolen bikes keep police busy

News Briefs

Old idea, same story for USC

By Jessica Leeder
Gazette Staff

The University Students' Council put portions of a failed presidential campaign and weeks of planning into practice with the opening of a new information center, The Front, Monday morning.

USC president Mike Lawless said the idea for the council's "quasi" second office came partly from a 1998 presidential campaign.

"Lots of councils have talked about doing something like this and never done it," he said. "We thought it would be a good opportunity for us to [come] down from the third floor and make the council more visible to students."

The rarely utilized space, which borders the outer wall of The Spoke on the main floor of the University Community Centre, was previously rented by clubs and organizations throughout the year, Lawless said. Now the USC plans to use the space for councillors' mailboxes, printed information, a computer and furniture allowing people to just "hang out."

"The Front will be an easier place for people to meet and it will make the USC more accessible to students," said Wendy Chau, a fourth-year administrative and commercial studies student and social science councillor.

"It will make the USC less intimidating for people who want to get involved," she added.

Lawless said he anticipates the initiative will make councillors and other people involved with the USC feel like they have more of a role. "With The Front, people are given an opportunity to get their face out there and represent their constituents," he said.

Each councillor will be required to spend one hour a week at The Front to make sure someone is always there to answer questions and hand out information.

While this is the first time the USC has ever required its councillors to keep office hours, Chau said she does not anticipate any adverse reaction. "If you want to be a councilor, you want to be there for the students," she said.

In addition to opening The Front, the USC was also celebrating the launching of their new and improved website yesterday.

"The new site is easier to navigate, more functional and flashier," said Tim Shortill, USC communications officer. "Very few pages take more than two clicks on the mouse to get to, which will make it easier for people who are not familiar with the site to get on and get involved."

Shortill said the website is more interactive than the previous one, allowing students to request committee, commissioner and club forms, minutes from board meetings and USC media releases.

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