Volume 95, Issue 89

Thursday, March 21, 2002
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It's official: London 'all mixed up'

Malaise at Dalhousie University

Meningitis death causes fear

Colleges get funding to play 'tradesies'

Critics dismiss immigration study

Physics lecture: 'pretty geeky'

Engineers plan future pumping poop

Labatt's - making dreams come true

News Briefs

Malaise at Dalhousie University

By Jessica Leeder
Gazette Staff

A malaise has settled over the student body at Dalhousie University in Halifax, where a faculty strike is nearing the end of its third straight week.

Students saw day 13 of cancelled classes come and go yesterday. They will be chalking up at least one more empty day as negotiations between the university, the Dalhousie Faculty Association and a provincial mediator begin again today.

The university and the Dalhousie Student Union have been flooded with questions from students and concerned community members, but it is too soon to say what the outcome of today's negotiations could mean.

"I feel anxious about the possibility of losing the credits I have been working for and also about not being prepared because of the amount of work I have missed, but I realize that it is beyond my control, so there is nothing I can do," said Brendan Quinn, a third-year history of science and technology and philosophy student at Dalhousie.

"We're committed to completing the end of the academic year and we're hoping to do it on time," said Stacey Lewis, Dalhousie spokeswoman.

"It is possible that we will have to extend the year, but that is only a secondary option – we realize students have a lot of commitments and we're sensitive to the fact that students need to earn money in order to come back next year," she said.

Quinn said he would rather see the year compressed than extended if negotiations between the two parties are successful in the short-term.

"We're not quite going to get our money's worth, but the credit is more important than the money I have lost," he said.

Shawn Tracey, DSU president, said the disruption of classes has been unnecessarily long.

"No real effort has been put in by either side to reach an agreement and there seems to only have been three full days of negotiations in all the time they have been on strike," Tracey said.

"The arguments on both sides have legitimacy and I sympathize with the teachers, but it is hard to say whose arguments are more justified," Quinn said.

Tracey said he hopes mediation between the DFA and Dalhousie will be a step in the right direction.

"A strike or a labour dispute is a disadvantage for students right from the beginning. It hurts the reputation of the university and makes it harder for students to keep up in the end," Tracey said.

Lewis said the mediation, mandated by the Government of Nova Scotia, will begin today at 9:30 a.m..

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