The Proverbial Piggy Bank

January 24, 2013
This article was published more than 2 years ago.
Est. Reading Time: 2 minutes

Nichole Fanara / The Silhouette

Thank you journalism! Thank you for being an inquiring body, thank you for following leads, and thank you for fearlessly publishing controversial topics that will now result in justice for thousands of part-time students!

No thank you to McMaster University for not properly giving a shit about their student’s financial burden.

Anything that has “McMaster” right in the name generally comes back around to the University.  I would think that an institution that demands thousands of dollars from its students would bat an eyelash when a student-run government has used its name in vain, and stolen thousands more from their students.

Who is ultimately responsible?

MAPS, the part-time student run governing body (much like the MSU for full-time students) was recently hit with a financial inquiry that found their president and exec team stealing money from their society and feeding themselves inflated salaries, trips to Europe, and expensive and unnecessary luxuries.

The most interesting part to this story is that this went unnoticed by students and McMaster for YEARS. And their president used to be a president for the MSU only a few short years before. Think about that before you vote this time around.

There are two things that bother me most about student governments funded by students. The first is the supplementary fees that we are forced to pay for through our tuition. With no opt-out option, how is this fair for students who do not wish to be a part of the union? Sure, we could debate that the union is here to help us and in our best interest, but that aside, students deserve a choice. If a student doesn’t want to pay for it they shouldn’t have to - this is not a tax.  But there is a lot of money involved here. What if I don’t agree with what the MSU is doing? What if I don’t use the facilities, don’t care, or just would like the healthy democratic option to opt-out and save a couple hundred dollars on my tuition?

My second issue is this - how has it become so easy for presidents and exec members to steal money from McMaster students? And why? What is it about our system that makes these sticky fingers so easily satisfied? I don’t think any of us have the answers right now, but I do know that this is more than a moral issue. McMaster should not make it this easy to for her students to suffer financial burdens by the hands of its own.  If there is no opt-out option for a fee that costs students hundreds of dollars, than McMaster herself needs to oversee what and where this money is going.

I want to know what exactly it is that I am paying for, and why.  If there is nothing to hide, then the answers to these questions should be accessible.

Let’s not allow another president to pick our pockets.

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