Concordia rector finds student union disruptive

Tensions flared up at the Sept. 26 Board of Governors (BoG) meeting, where Rector Frederick Lowy expressed his extreme annoyance and disappointment with the Concordia Student Union (CSU) and its current leadership.
The meeting became a strained and tense affair when it was time for Lowy to make his report. He described to the BoG that the university’s very public “black eye” that was the result of the disruptive events that had taken place over the summer. He described his relations with the CSU as having been fairly harmonious for the first three years of his tenure. The last three years had become acrimonious as the CSU became more and more confrontational when it dealt with the university’s administration.
He used the CSU’s recently published student handbook as an example of just how bad the situation had become. He denounced the Intifada editorial and condemned a number of articles published throughout the book as being mean-spirited and irresponsible. “Sally Spilhouse [Advisor of the office of rights and responsibilities] is not a racist,” he added.
Lowy was also dismayed by the “Steal Something Today” article. He described the appalled reaction to the student’s handbook as he described the quality and the quantity of e-mails, faxes and letters he had received ever since the handbook had been released. “This gives the university a bad image.”
The rector was looking directly at CSU President Sabrina Stea when he said this and finished his report by telling her that the university would be always willing to co-operate with the student union, but “it takes two to tango.”
A motion of support for Lowy’s actions over the summer, especially the banning of two students from the university, was easily passed by the board.
Jack Lightstone, provost and vice-rector research, said the CSU has been high-jacked by a small group of activists who have little to do with student life here at Concordia.
Michael Di Grappa, the vice-rector of services demanded to know from Stea just what was meant by expelled CSU vp internal Laith Marouf’s comment, “In two weeks, you’ll be sorry!” Stea said that it was a legal affair.
Lowy’s remarks also included the news of a rise in student enrollment just as enrollments in the rest of the province were in decline. He was pleased to comment upon the quality and the variety of the programs presently offered by the university.
He also announced that the university would be hiring over a hundred and fifty new professors over the next two year and that here were more international and out of province students than ever before. He was happy to state that the university’s reputation has been much improved and that the university debt was eliminated.
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