The Spike or Victoria University College Review June 1926
A College Hostel
A College Hostel.
Salvarm Lassie: Excuse me. but are you saved?
The Individual: ME? I come from the Hadfield Hostel!
Salvarm Lassie: Oh. I beg your pardon.
—Capping Carnival Programme, 1914.
"We cannot think of any form of benefaction directly affecting student life which would have a more wholesome influence than the budding and equipment of a Students' Hostel,"—Report of Reichel-Tate University Commission, 1925.
We are in the happy position of being able to report definite and promising action towards the establishment of a Varsity hostel. For some considerable time ways and means have been discussed by a special committee representing the College Council and Professorial Board, the Graduates' and Past Students' Association, and the Students' Association. Now a definite proposal has emerged in the form of a suggestion that the College should acquire that piece or parcel of land commonly known as the Martin Kennedy site, which is situated immediately over the Salamanca cable car stop. The Government has made a grant of £5,000 towards the cost of its acquisition, and the Council is negotiating with the Hospital Board for a clear title.
Now all this is admirable, but it has far-reaching implications which must cause us furiously to think. The hostel is for the students, and we must be ready to take an active share in providing it. The building will not drop ready-made from heaven, nor even from the Government. At the most we shall get a subsidy on funds which we raise ourselves. There is not the slightest doubt that it can be done, when we recall what has been accomplished here in the past. The year 1904 saw less than two hundred students at the College, yet when an appeal was page 53 issued for funds to erect the main building the Students' Association voted £25 from its meagre funds and raised a further £200 in a few days from individual students. Four or five years later, when funds were needed to clear the debt on the gymnasium, students—no less impecunious than ourselves—responded with debentures, commonly for the sum of £5, which were redeemed within six months. Possibly some such scheme might commend itself to this generation of students.
We hope to be in a position in our next issue to record substantial progress. Meanwhile we wish to express unbounded gratitude to the Government for its grant, and we earnestly exhort every student to do his utmost towards providing funds if and when an appeal is made.