SMAD. An Organ of Student Opinion. 1931. Volume 2. Number 4.
"The sooner we realise that our fates lie not in the stars but in ourselves, the better."
We are happy to congratulate the members of the new Executive on their success and to express our cordial good wishes for a successful conclusion to what promises to be a most arduous year, including the additional work entailed by the tournament.
We also hasten to congratulate Mr. Plank at what was otherwise one of the most hilarious annual meetings in history, on the passing of a motion directing the new Executive to set up a committee having as its object the erection of a new Students' Union Building.
The details of the scheme may safely be left to the committee, but a consideration of the part to be played by students will not be out of place. It may be argued that the time is not opportune for launching such a project, but we are sure all students will agree that difficulties, like examination questions, arise only to be surmounted; and both are disposed of only by hard work.
Admittedly times are hard, and the Executive has to face a serious fall in revenue occasioned by the reduction in the number of students paying the annual levy. However, students, whether in executive positions or not, can hasten the erection of the building, if they adopt the attitude that every neglected source of revenue and every penny of needless expenditure entailed by avoidable breakages and slipshod methods must inevitably result in postponing still further the erection of a building long overdue.
If students will realise that every club grant either foregone or reduced will result in the balance saved being devoted towards the attainment of their cherished ideal, it will ease the task of the new Executive in accumulating money out of revenue.
Everyone of the 800 students attending College must fritter away at least five shillings per month in ephemeral luxuries or amusements. Five shillings per month is a conservative estimate of the average expenditure, but it will suffice as an illustration. If every student were to devote one of those five shillings per month to the Building Fund, the committee would be able to increase the balance in hand from £600 in May, 1931. to £1000 in May, 1932—even if we neglect the stoppage of contributions occasioned by the summer vacation. The idea is not impossible. A school not 120 miles from Wellington has raised a substantial fund for its new chapel by the sale of paper "bricks" at one shilling each. During vacations students could arrange private functions such as bridge evenings—the proceeds of which could go towards the fund. The important thing to realise is that every little helps and that many hands make light work.
More people around us than we realise take an interest in students and their welfare. We are sure that this interest can be quickened into helpful activity if we talk Students' Union Building incessantly wherever we go. Furthermore, if we let every one know that we have united in a determined attempt to have a worthy Students' Union Building as soon as humanly possible we can point out what we have so far achieved when launching an appeal for funds.
The committee when set up can safely be relied on to go thoroughly into the whole question, but without co-operation from every person connected with the College their efforts will be seriously hampered.
It would be superfluous to traverse the manifold arguments in favour of a new building as long as the present dismal erection constitutes so useless a drain on student revenue. If we set ourselves to raise a definite sum and to have a new building not later than 1936, we are confident that on the completion of the project all our sacrifices entailed by such a "five-year plan" will have been well worth while.