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Ryerson University’s radio stationing license revoked

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) revoked Ryerson University’s radio stationing license last week.

CKLN-FM Toronto, a community radio station on the university campus has been a prevalent part of the university for 28 years.

Although the station’s license will not expire until Aug. 31, 2014, the CRTC said that its license was revoked due to a failure to meet regulations. These include the station not logging its content, equipment management and debt.

As with most university campus radio stations, CKLN is not owned by Ryerson University. However, most of its funding does come from students of the university. Each full-time student contributes $10 a year, which sums to approximately $240,000 annually.

Problems first emerged in 2009 when the station faced problems with in-fighting, which lead to the building manager locking out staff and volunteers for seven months. During that time the radio station aired previously played content. In July 2009, many complaints surfaced regarding the governance structure, operations and programming of the station. Since then, the CRTC has been in the process of generating several formal discussions with the radio station, demonstrating their concern with their operational structure.

The Globe and Mail reported on Jan. 28 that Konrad von Finckenstein, CRTC chairman, released a news release stating that the radio station had been given many warnings and opportunities to remedy the difficulties the organization was facing. Andrew Lehrer, a member of the station’s board of directors, said the station is working towards remedying their problems.

Labiba Haque

University of Alberta suspends fraternity

The University of Alberta’s administration has suspended the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity chapter for five years after allegations were made regarding the fraternity’s hazing practices.

The suspension will prohibit the fraternity from using University property, liquor licenses and insignia. Also, Delta Kappa Epsilon won’t be allowed to participate in University governance or other University activities.

The suspension comes after months of investigating allegations that were raised in Oct. 2010, when the University of Alberta found videos of the fraternity’s hazing rituals on the Internet.

Pledges were shown being closed into plywood boxes, deprived of sleep and being forced to eat their own vomit over the fraternity’s four-day initiation process.

In December 2010, after learning about these allegations, Delta Kappa Epsilon International provisionally suspended the university’s chapter for three years. A local alumni council was formed to help the fraternity change its initiation practices.

The Gateway, University of Alberta’s campus newspaper, reported that on Jan. 27, the fraternity apologized to the university community on their website.

“We agree that hazing has no place at the University of Alberta or in fraternity life, and we, the Delta Phi chapter of Delta Kappa Epsilon, apologize to the international fraternity, the University of Alberta, the university community and the other fraternities at the university,” the fraternity posted.

Although Delta Kappa Epsilon will continue to exist, it will no longer be affiliated with the University of Alberta. The fraternity can apply for the suspension to be lifted after three years, pending good behavior.

Katherine Fernandez-Blance

Dalhousie faces financial questions

Dalhousie University will be impacted significantly by a new provincial university funding plan.

Last year, Dalhousie received a total of $190.2 million from the government for its operating budget. In the 2011-12 academic year Dalhousie will be facing a four per cent decrease in grant funding. This translates to a loss of approximately $14 million.

Marilyn More, minister of Labour and Advanced Education, said Nova Scotia plans on capping tuition increases for undergraduate students at three per cent. More said the goal of this measure is to make the university more affordable and accessible for students.

More informed the Council of Nova Scotia University Presidents in Halifax on Feb. 1 about these changes. According to More, most universities in Canada are raising tuition by approximately four per cent each year, adding that universities in Nova Scotia will have to absorb their own inflation costs and wage increases.

The O’Neill report, which was presented to the provincial government last fall, criticized Nova Scotia’s student assistance program for being one of worst student assistance programs in Canada. More said she is committed to improving this program, as well as maintaining the Student Bursary Program at $29 million per year. This year, the bursary is worth $1,283 for students.

Since 2008, the Memorandum of Understanding between Nova Scotia and its universities ensured that tuition for all students was frozen. However, this agreement is set to expire on Mar. 31.

Jessica Fishbein

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