Arts Center not so good
Thomas Wombacher's argument for the building of the Performing Arts Center brought up a point that should be responded to. Being that Mr. Wombacher says that the millions that the Center needs to be built can be raised by "selling candy", I propose that the only ones who would even step inside the Center (performing arts students) do exactly that: sell candy, or whatever else they can get their hands on. I bet that if the students who are now paying for the Center saw their money going to things that they cared about or needed, like maintaining and improving the University's central departments, neither they nor the faculty would object to this project.
Really, though, Mr. Wombacher doesn't need to write commentaries to get support for the Arts Center. UM-St. Louis is no democracy. Autocracy is more accurate. Under this regime, Blanche Touhill is in charge and her agenda is the one followed. Touhill, in what can only be seen as a quest for self-promotion, runs UM-St. Louis with little regard for the needs of its constituents. When it is convenient for her, she plans new buildings, funds new projects and builds gated communities. She gives little attention to the faculty, even less to the students (you have better odds of winning Powerball than getting a response to an e-mail sent to her) and is doing a pretty good job of suburbanizing UM-St. Louis; that is, of building along the University's borders while destroying its core.
The Performing Arts Center is Touhill's latest scheme for immortality and there is really no way to stop it. Having listened to detailed examinations of the Center's costs and benefits, the Center is a travesty to this campus. Yet, Mr. Wombacher needn't worry, at least until a couple of years down the road when the performing arts departments start to lose funding and faculty despite growing student numbers, all to fund some new project. (Anyone for a new vacuum cleaner research facility?)
If there is one thing that UM-St. Louis is currently excelling in, it's eating the heart out of its central reasons for existing.
RATE OUR PAGES |