Friday, February 16, 2007

St Patrick's Day Festival makes a return

The second St Patrick's Day Festival in association with Queen's and University of Ulster was officially launched today at QFT. The success of last year's event ensures a firm foundation for what is being boasted as an even more "exciting venture" by Queen's Pro VC, Professor Gerry McCormac.

The festival has been extended to four days running from Wednesday 14th March to St Patrick's Day itself and will consist of a range of "music, sports, film, poetry, visual art and spiritual events".

Recent years have seen much negative publicity regarding the University area around St Patrick's Day with complaints from residents that student rowdiness and generally drunken behaviour has reached intolerable levels as many 'drown the shamrock'. The Universities hope that, in organising a range of events from dodgeball to the all-new 'Scavenger Hunt' where teams have the opportunity to win £1000, students will celebrate in a "sensible and fun way". Professor McCormac views the Festival as a "working example of how both Universities are committed to tackling student misbehaviour".

Programmes for the range of events at the Festival are available from various locations around the University including QFT.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

A Song and Dance kicked up at SRCSU...

Last week at a meeting of the Student Representative Council of the Student's Union (SRCSU) the farce that is Northern Ireland politics was played out again by the majority faction of the Council.

The suggestion that an Irish Folk Music Society should be formally recognised by the SRCSU was greeted with a tied vote which speaker, Graham Barton, was left to resolve by casting the decider. The decision to reject the group's application was based on a number of grounds including a supposed undermining of the SRCSU by raising the application at executive level before bringing it before the Council and the suggestion also that there are "too many societies". Funding and resources were cited as being the core issue here.

Of course there were those members of the Council who stated their opposition to the recognition of the society on the basis of supposed sectarian music being played. Certain members of the executive walked out in protest - no reason was stated but all had supported the application for recognition of the Folk Society.

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