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THERE IT IS: A student aims for the basket at Tuesday's Hoop and Soup.
Kathleen Senf/The Gauntlet

Hoop and soup to Edmonton

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Bus fare may be $1.60, but on Wednesday, the Students' Union gave students soup for free to get them on a bus to Edmonton. The soup kitchen was the second in a series of activities related to the SU's planned bus trip to the provincial legislature on April 6.

The soup kitchen, held by the Puff 'n' Pop in MacEwan Hall, attracted a few students as they passed through from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

"We got rid of probably about 70 cans [of soup]," said SU Vice-president External Nassr Awada.

Along with distributing tomato soup, the SU set up phones for students to call their MLAs.

"A handful, about 15 people, were phoning MLA's," said Awada. "People stopped calling at 12:30."

Most people who passed the soup kitchen without picking up a cup of soup were either in a hurry or uninterested. A few students did stop to talk with the SU.

"It's a very good idea," said Political Science student J.P. Roel. "It forces people to ask what's going on and by doing that, they'll know about Edmonton."

On Tuesday, the SU set up a basketball hoop in MacEwan Student Centre for Shoot Your Way Out of Debt, which was originally supposed to be Climb Your Way Out of Debt, with a climbing wall.

"Hooping your way out of debt is a bit easier than climbing your way out of debt," said Awada, adding that the change was cheaper.

Passing students were interested, though some questioned the seriousness of the campaign's posters and banners.

"I'm not sure about the 'thank you for nothing,'" said graduate Social Work student Hien Ngo. "I think the message gets across, but [what] it's going to send to the minister I'm not sure."

Ngo added, however, that it was still a very good idea.

"I think it's really ridiculous that they have to increase tuition every year [because the funding is unavailable]," he said. "This is my sixth year, so I've been seeing a lot of these changes in tuition every year."

Awada hopes the trip will put post-secondary education higher on Minister of Learning Lyle Oberg's list of priorities.

"Students have requested to meet with him, and he's pulled out," said Awada. "If he's not willing to do something, maybe we can pressure his caucus to act."

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