Y2K is Y2 complicated

By Nassr Awada

With all this jazz about what everyone will be doing on New Years Eve, and all the hype of how the Year 2000 will turn out to be, there are bigger issues facing students on this campus this Winter semester. First, the Block Week students aren’t sure about what y2k will have in store for them. If classes are canceled, the Student’s Union has been assured that every student will be aware of the class closures. What if the heating pipes, which are regulated by computers, freeze up? Mac Hall would turn into the Fantasyland Water Park. The Purple Pleasure Palace could bring in new acts like Flipper and Shamoo the Killer whale.

Speaking of animals, what about all the animals and plants in the research laboratories? I’ve been told that if the problem does come up, it will be dealt with and heating lamps that were once used to illegally grow pot would spring up from the coffers of the previous generation of long-haired professors. (Our generation of ponytails comes from a long line of Michael Bolton fans. Where did you say you wanted me to stick that lava lamp? Gross!)

My concern is with those students who are supposed to receive Canada Millennium Scholarship funding. This is the federal government $2.5 billion dollar promise to cure all debt problems of the next generation. Alberta has received around $26.6 million each year, for ten years. There are rumors that students will only have 10 days to pick up their cheques from the Awards Office, otherwise they go back to the feds for you to deal with. That’s crazy! How can you distribute that much money in 10 days?

Many students don’t even know what made them eligible to receive the funds. How did these pennies from heaven fall on to some of your laps you ask? Let me tell you. First, only those names who apply for student loans will be entered into the draw. The second criteria is that you must show at least $8000 in financial need for any money to come your way. So what if you only prove $7900? Well, that’s just too bad! Instead of a $4000 Millennium Scholarship cheque, you will receive a $1500 Alberta Opportunities Bursary. Congratulations on second place son! I’m sure if students were aware of how much they needed to prove to receive those extra funds, they would find some part of their budget they already shaved off to make ends meet!

I do hope that there is some sort of y2k issue though. I hope that another zero finds its way onto the sinking Millennium Scholarship Fund making it $20.5 billion to address some of the other issues facing post-secondary education. Both governments need to spend time educating students about this money. You can’t keep it a confidential like the Colonel’s secret recipe. Shut up kid, don’t ask so many questions. You want a fresh one!

Nassr Awada
SU VP External

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