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February 19, 2007 | by  | in Opinion | [ssba]


If you think being a university student makes you special then you are right. This place shapes and ejects the people who will one day transform New Zealand. Look around today and you’ll see a pack of insecure wannabes, but in years to come they’ll be wearing suits and wowing the rest of us with their ideas. Your position as a student is a privileged one – most others won’t get the chance to encounter the ideas taught here. Some of those ideas will become mantles that burn into your soul.

At Victoria University you’ll face one of the most important decisions of your life; whether to conform to the world or challenge it. Most of you will settle for the safer first option and you’ll become socialised. You’ll view Victoria as a career move, and when the gap between the rich and the poor increases, you’ll keep adding the digits, turning the wheels and drinking the cocktails.

When I was studying at Vic I did exactly that (I drank beer instead of cocktails though). I started with a law degree because lawyers were the guys the world admired. While studying I discovered that university was more like a long race than a career move. Like all joggers I learnt that it didn’t matter how I started but how I ended.

If you are new to this place then your race is about to begin. You might go on to break records. Alternatively, you might bail out. Whatever you do, make goddamn sure you drink before you run. Drink now because you won’t get the chance later. Drink to loud music (like So So Modern and Nga Tama Kino) and enjoy being a student. Student life is socially-validated slumming – be sure to abuse this.

In this, the first edition of Salient, we have tried to cater for the new student- the first-year. This edition is dedicated to their time at Vic and we hope they live it to excess. Salient contributors Laura McQuillan, Nick Archer, Steven Gilligan, Flukeman, Dave Thomson, Grant Buist, Nicola Kean, Tom Baragwanath, Rob Addison, Eleanor Bishop and Stacey Knott have journeyed into art venues, theatres, bars and the minds of celebrities to bring you a guide to Wellington, what’s on at this year’s orientation and essential information for first years. Some of the writers had to get drunk to dig out their stories. I’m thankful for their time and effort. If reading this Orientation rag encourages you to go and see something you otherwise wouldn’t have then we’ve done our job. Break on through to the other side.

PS- Salient needs rebel writers who are tired of the clichés of the mainstream media and who want to construct copy which is intelligent and critical. We welcome clever thinkers and original ideas. If you want to make a difference come and talk to the Salient team (2nd floor, Student Union Building).


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Comments (5)

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  1. This editorial has no point.

    Are we to feel priviledged that to be at University? Or are you telling us to be part of the solution and not another Jonny number cruncher? Or are you telling us to not question the social constructs we are placed in and just drink beer and take part in “socially validated slumming”.

    And what the fuck has the Doors quote at the end got to do with anything?

    Are you a moron?

  2. I’d also like to add that the only wowing most of these people at University will ever do is impressing their Public Service supervisor with the way they shuffle paper.

  3. Janina Nicoll says:

    He’s telling you to enjoy the ride Nathaniel Hornblower Esquire…. Something your serious name denotes may become an impossibility as you enter your cynical world each morning. ‘Break on through to the other side’? ‘The other side’ = post grad life. ‘Break on through’ = move from your starting place at university through to your post graduate position by way of breaking things, smashing ideas, challenging the status quo, smiling, which could mean drinking beer if one so desires… maybe you should try it sometime?

  4. mystery writer #32 says:

    suppose theres a host of very good reasons not to include email contacts on your student magazine website but my difficulty is though that you gave me your textured business card when I stopped in for a chat the other week and its gone disappeared from my clutching clutches.

    got some storming brain thinking to share with chief editor steve.

    an email contact would be appreciated as I would venture outside and into your office but this sudden and all consuming bout of raging agoraphobia has me feeling the digital realm is the safest mode of reality.

    in short, I need steves email.

    mystery writer #56

  5. Suska says:

    steve, I think you have just invented rock’n’roll-journalism. yes, break on through to the other side; but withstand the hot lava in the in-between bits.

    susanna (from the other side)

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