Are you all ready for this year’s winter carnival? It’s going to be a doozy. Here are some things that are included in the $3.00 ticket: “two concerts, three meals, seven movies, a drama production, and eligibility in the prize-laden scavenger hunt.” There’s also the pub, “a coffee-shop, ping pong championships, skating, a boat race, an office chair race, a pep rally, a karate demonstration, and an auction of lost goods.”
Oh wait, that was the winter carnival schedule for the week of January 26, 1972. It’s hard to imagine such an ambitious undertaking at UTM in 2020.
It’s the third week of a new semester and this campus couldn’t be more boring. Students are corpse-like, depressed, and lethargic. It feels like nobody wants to be here.
This is symptomatic of a larger issue on campus that has plagued UTM since its inception. The Medium has been reporting on campus apathy for years. Just last semester we published two articles — an editorial and an op-ed — addressing student apathy. Part of this apathy stems from UTM’s image as an uninviting campus.
UTM is not a cozy campus. There is not a corner on this campus where you can sit and feel comfortable studying, reading, or learning. This place doesn’t inspire, it deflates. The buildings are blocks of cold concrete. They don’t feel like places that advance the university mandate — the pursuit of truth and knowledge. They are instead places of operation and business. At its worst, when there is no one around, the UTM campus is sterile and lifeless. Put bluntly, the campus is ugly.
It should be an inviting place — a place driven by wonder and filled with a community of people who are passionate about learning and developing new experiences.
Students come to campus for their classes and then they leave. And many of them accept knowledge, they don’t pursue it.
Not that that is the university’s problem, but an inviting campus is the first step to a conducive learning experience for undergraduates.